Friday, January 31, 2014

Kid's Town Tornado

Kid's Town got neglected over the Christmas holiday, old west ghost town style, and then it got hit with a flood. Thus kid's town and the basement in which it resides have both been in a sad and messy state for several weeks. I, Mom (aka President of Kid Country) recently appointed a czar named Hyrum and he got his ground crews working to try to clean up their town. It looks much better now. They have made a "garbage dump" which now holds lots of things that I'm sure I, who am also the Federal Disaster Clean Up Expert, will be the one who goes through and sorts, but better to have it kinda organized down there and to have all the misc junk one spot rather than all over the whole floor.
Abi is opening her toy store again. I do think these little girls have too many toys. "There shall not be room enough to receive." Melodie was helping me sort and organize things in the girl's room last night. Natalie is sitting up now, she was making sure all the duplo legos were in order. And I am in love with her thighs.
Top random thoughts on my brain right now:
1) I'm reading Journey to the Veil by John Pontius and really love it. Highly recommend.
2) I'm experimenting with DoTerra oils, anyone else having fun with those? The oregano oil, which I think is powerfully dangerous, has almost gotten rid of a mole on my wrist, so I guess it must do something.
3) Excited to go see Brian Regan on February 28th
4) An police officer in Utah named Cory Wride died in the line of duty yesterday. It gave our extended family and friends a few scares when they heard the name over the news, as it is almost exactly like my significant other. I'm sure there's a genealogical connection a few generations back. Condolences to his family. He left behind a wife and 5 children, so sad.
5) Tomorrow our prep for our Valentine Family "Just Because" Party Begins. :) Colors: Red, Pink, White ~ On the menu: Salmon, roasted red potatoes, Red Salad ~ Desserts: Red Velvet cake, pink and red candies, heart shaped cookies and oh, I'm sure it's gonna be really easy and fun to find lots of pink heart treats for the kids! Plus a big box of chocolates of course.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Oreo Brownie Cookie Cake

I was first introduced to these oreo cookie brownie cake thing on a friend's blog when she made it for her son's birthday cake. Joseph requested it for his b-day cake too.
Kid heaven, no? Cookie crust on bottom, a layer of oreos, top it off with some brownie mix, mmm.
And this is how the little girls eat oreos, which is okay by me (when I'm not caring about diet) cause I like the outside, so it's a win win. :)
Here's her recipe:
Line a 9x9 with parchment paper. 1 package chocolate chip cookie mix follow directions on package except melt the butter, oreo cookies (I used triple layer... why not?!?!) 1 box brownie mix with a splash more oil. Bake in a 350° oven for 30 minutes. Let cool 30 minutes. Using parchment paper, lift from pan to a cutting board. Cut into 12 brownies.  Or 4 brownies.
It can be done by scratch, but I wanted (needed) easy because of the labor involved with the birthday meal request.   This is one of the easiest birthday desserts I've ever made.  AND the candles came out clean! Enjoy!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Happy Baby

Natalie was nicer to me on Saturday and yesterday and appears to have (thankfully) moved on to making different baby sounds. I think (hope) that she spent so much time working on her pterodactyl/bird imitation, that she feels she has now perfected it and it's time to try something new, so she's traded in her macaw screech for a little short coo sound. She'll look at us and then do a quiet little "eah!" sound/squeek, then do that over and over again. Much much more pleasant and endurable to listen to for hours on end. So fun to learn new things, huh Natale!
Yes, it makes us all happy! She is starting to get upset with us if we place her in her exersaucer thing - she knows it means we're trying to get rid of her. It's not that, Natalie, it's just that we are trying to keep up with our lives, and as much as we all wish we could just kiss your face and squeeze your legs all the day long, the kids have homework and I have food to prepare and a house to clean. Maybe you could help us out and just stay little?
The dirty dishes aren't going anywhere, but this baby is growing way too fast. So, ok, come here Natalie, lets go cuddle.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Is It Possible To Craft with Kids?

Yesterday was a humdinger of a day, motherhood wise. I stayed home most all the day, so it wasn't busy with running around, just with homemaking life. I got a little over my head by taking on too many projects and then with my little girls trying to stop me from accomplishing any of them. For some reason I decided to start to repaint the girl's bedroom dresser from the cream color it was to glossy white. Their room had been perfectly clean the night before, but then I turned it on it's head by having to empty all the drawers and take them outside to paint. That project probably could have / should have waited. In addition to that, I am gathering supplies for a Jewelry Board that I want to make. It's currently underway, albeit mostly in my head. But I just loved the idea, so pretty, and to turn your jewelry into a display for the wall I think is just a great idea. Want to make one for Melodie to. So that's on my brain and around my house right now. And I started also making jute/decor ball thingys, and top that off with the regular cleaning that comes with each day, right? So as I was trying to do all these things, these three girls decided to join efforts to sabotage me:
Culprit #1) My sweet baby is trying her best to make me loco with her screaming. She's not mad or anything, she's just discovered her voice. So this past week, and especially yesterday, the little quiet Natalie we all knew has changed into 6 month old sqwaking macaw or a schreeching pterodactyl or some kinda loud bird that makes a very loud and shrieking sound. She was doing it ALL day yesterday, and it got increasingly louder and shrill as the evening progressed. Was making my nerves get very on edge. So with that in the background, I introduce Culprit #2)
...After my Dollar store run to get decor ball supplies, I also picked up some kid toothpaste, which Lily (culprit #3) got out and left out for Sophia, who brought the empty tube of it to me as I was crafting... I grab the tube and examine it, yes, this is not an old toothpaste tube, this is the new tube I just bought less than 2 hours ago... "Did you eat this?!?!" (look at label, yup "Call poison control if more than the amount used for brushing is swallowed...") "Sophia, did you eat this? This whole tube?!?!" Before I called 911 or rushed her to the emergency room, I went to the kids' bathroom to make sure it was eaten and not squirted out on the counter, where to my great relief I found it in a pile in the toothbrush drawer.
In my heart: "PHEW!" then to the toddler: "Sophi, you made a mess. What do you have to say for yourself, pretty girl?"
It's all about perspective. The situation would have been much worse with an ER visit, so yes, I was relieved and happy and grateful to find this big mess vs. her having eaten it all. (Natalie still squawking by the way.) So, after saying thanks to the Lord, I cleaned that up. This whole time the house is continuing to get progressively messier and messier with each passing minute of me trying to work on my too many projects. So I stopped crafting and cleaned that up, then off to change a poopy diaper, then into the girls' room to clean off the lipsick that Culprit #3 Lily again got out of my bathroom and gave to Sophia which Sophia put on the bedroom window, blinds, and bedframe (not on the carpet, hooray!!) (... and Natalie crying squawking now) then off to plunge a toilet that Ethan clogged cause he used a ton of toilet paper ~ when asked to explain his using half a roll, he stated that he spied something wet on the seat. Yeah, instead of just wiping it off, he had to make a mountain of tp layers to protect himself, not wanting to risk his fingers getting near it. Then I had the tub on full blast cause I was slightly worried his clog would back up the water main like last year when I was sick and Corey had done all the shopping and bought the ultra thick and absorbent Charmin tp which the kids used way too unsparingly and a big pile of it clogged the drain pipes 200 feet underground. Yeah, so that was how yesterday ended and that's the end of my run on sentences for now. We'll see if I make any progress with anything today. Come on Saturday, go easy on me!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Big Brothers & Books

It was in the afternoon, and I was upstairs, when I heard Joseph's voice saying to his little sisters "You want me to read you a story? Come here..." I continued to listen as he read them one of the Cinderella books I got on my thrift store run ~
Sweetest thing ever. Don't you just love big brothers? As he was reading, I heard him say "Oh! Oh! Mom! There's a typo!!" (He was so excited about it!) "They used the wrong 'there'! They said 'When THERE game was over' T-H-E-R-E when it should have been T-H-E-I-R!! Ha! I could sue them!"
Hmm, probably can't sue them, but I admit it's always exciting to find typing errors for some reason. Makes us readers feel smarter than the authors and publishers or something?
Anyway, it was so sweet. Then last night Hyrum started reading a book to Lily too ~ of course Abi started to listen and came to see the pages...
Then Wes came over too... It's interesting that they can't resist books. It has a pull just like a television that's turned on, only books obviously are much better for you than tv. If I ask them to read with me, I might get one or two takers, but once I start reading, anyone who's within ear shot can't help themselves and they start to quietly listen and then they will all start coming over and peeking at the pictures. Love it.
Although if there are no pictures, and it is getting late, they can't help dozing off. One by one I lost my audience last night... I started reading "Man's Search for Meaning" to them, which is pretty heavy reading before falling to sleep. It was so late though that most of them were only half awake when I started, so no one had bad dreams from it. What a powerful experience that one is though. Pretty sobering.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Well Visit Outing

Last Monday Natalie had a 6 month check up. With how excited the girls were go be visiting the outside world, you'd think I never take them out.
And that would be a fairly accurate thing to assume, since I usually avoid taking kids in tow unless it's absolutely necessary.
So, this was just a simple well visit with no ultrasounds. I didn't expect to have a 90 minute wait time at this clinic considering my past well visit experiences here, therefore I didn't bother asking a friend to watch them or having a sitter... Get your coats and shoes, girls... we're gonna leave the house today! Aren't you excited?
I was getting a kick out of them the whole time, they were just cutely (not crazily) running from one thing to the next and pointing at it or talking about it ~ "Look! Fish! Look at how big my face is!"
"Look! A garbage can and a window!" ~ and then dash off to the next discovery.
Natalie was just gorgeous and adorable as ever, says her smitten mother. Playing with her monkey quietly in her carseat while her sisters seize this opportunity for adventurous exploration.
Into the doctors room to wait for our turn to be seen. The nice nurse lady got them some books to read.
And those precious few minutes of seeing them look at books reminded me that I need to get more "pretty" books for these little princesses, which they are low on because of normal wear and tear and also because of incidents like this that happen all too often. I went to the thrift store to find pink books and hit the jackpot, sweet! I'm okay with them ruining books that cost a buck or less.
Natalie checked out great, then over to another waiting area for the immunizations. They were intrigued but a bit disappointed by the fake fish there.
Natalie screamed for her shot, and Lily and Sophi were glad it wasn't them. You just have a few months, Lily, you are a little four year old that is going to be a very little kindergartner next year and will have your turn then.
Abi told Lily all about what it was like to try to prep her for the future trauma. See you then doctor. I'm very grateful for these happy and healthy kids.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Sleeping In

Been a busy day, but a typical one. I do enjoy my little girls sleeping in each morning. Gives me like two very quiet hours to myself. After the morning rush, which goes from 6:30 to 8:30, the rest of the morning looks like this from 8:30 - 10:30/11:00 ~
 Little girls sleeping on our floor and in our bed, which is where they migrate to during the night...
Good morning sleepy head! 
We'll try to get your older siblings to get to bed earlier so you little kids can too. (wishful thinking) (as it's 10:30 pm and the jazz band boys just got back from a rehearsal and are starting their homework and radio is on and there is noise and fun. And crying... gotta go feed Natalie. Goodnight to me and her!

Monday, January 20, 2014

Stupid Homework

I recently came to the computer where Melodie had been doing her math homework. I got a chuckle out of her taking out her frustrations by yelling at the computer ~
She was looking through pictures on my computer when she saw I had taken a picture of it. She told me that she would try to write "stupid" but the math program automatically changed her "pi" to "π", which totally made me laugh. So frustrating when you're trying to yell and the computer font won't let you, right? Mel's got a bit of my dislike for Math in her genes, but she's also got my creativity. She might be a little more creative actually. She came up with for her English homework, which I loved.

They are good students and are liking school, but we're all glad to have a break from it today and have another morning to sleep in, even if it is just one day.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Hockey Anyone?

Well, he did it. Corey made an ice rink. And after the first evening of skating out there last night, he is happy and relieved to say he feels very satisfied. 
He has worried his little head a lot over this past month wondering if the ice rink would even work. His helper Joseph spent one night waking up every hour to go move the hose and check to make sure it wasn't leaking. Joseph has kinda been Corey's minion during this whole process, such a good kid. So, there have been many mistakes made as they've ad hoc'ed their way through this idea of Corey's, like the ground not being level enough, and holes being torn in the plastic as they pulled it to lay it out, more problems than the one's they've related to me... (I need to make Corey and Joseph document all their ups and downs of their experience this winter...)
But yesterday it looked like it was as ready as it would ever be, so... time to give it test. For that you just need one last thing, which a trip to Scheels took care of -
He got two sizes to start with, one for him and one for the kids. Corey and Wes were the first ones on the ice. Next I decided to try with Corey's skates (way too big, but it worked) and Wes' friend Tess used his skates, and well, we are all just ready for a lot of icy cold fun!!
There was a lot of slip and falls going on. I don't have any footwork at all to speak of, but I didn't biff it.
Tiff didn't biff and Corey awed the youngsters with his control of himself on the ice doin' hockey stops and stuff. Although the ice was a little soft for him to show off all his skills.
Corey went and got more skates and hockey sticks today and now are officially ready for fun. Anyone want to come play? Game on!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Epic Fort Making

After I showed myself up with our little winter party last Saturday, the kids decided to show themselves up too with some serious fort making - Ethan, Abi and Wes were very proud of their fort in the study, made around the desk. This luxurious fort boasts 3 rooms and two lighting fixtures!
Melodie and Hyrum made sure not to disappoint by creating a fort that at it's highest peak reached 9 feet tall! The little pink one in the bottom corner is Sophi's fort, built under the desk. Small and simple.
Hyrum isn't very happy with his neighbors though. They (mostly Ethan) keep trying to start a war. Don't you hate it when you have neighbors like that...
Scrabble game party going on in the house.
I've been missing two barstools this week, not sure they misplaced them, but I blame the forts for their disappearance.
Abi posing in her suite.
Looks good guys!
So Ethan kept trying to start a war, then they started to fight, at which point Corey told them their fort game was over. It was around 9 pm Sunday night (we are so bad at getting to bed at a decent time, which is why the little girls have been sleeping in until 10 am on a regular basis, that's for another post though). They begged me to let them keep the forts up all week. No way kids, sorry. Glad you're playing nice, but you guys are going to be gone at school the majority of the time, and if your forts were left up, they would be giants monuments constantly reminding me of things that need to be put away, which not only would sap all my energy, but they would end up being knocked over and destroyed anyway. Better to have you guys do it while I have you in my control. Then off to bed, you can build forts again next weekend.
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