Friday, February 27, 2015

Peaks Jazz Festival

The boys have a jazz band festival this weekend. We all went tonight when Joseph and Ethan performed in the Little Big Band. It was a lot of fun to watch them jammin'. You could tell that Ethan was totally in the zone, it was cute. Both of them had solos. There was still another hour of performing after Joseph and Ethan were done, and I didn't think all my little friends would sit still for the rest of the time, so we called it good and I headed out with them, and my brother took a quick snapshot of us all. Nice zuit suits, boys!
Corey stayed for the rest of the show. Good stuff, good job kids. Hyrum performs with his "New Bop" band tomorrow night. 

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Sophi Needs Glasses

Just over a week ago, I noticed something as Sophi looked at me across the room. She seemed to be struggling to focus... I looked at her more carefully and yes, one of her eyes was starting to wander... And you know what that is a sign for. Yup, time to get this little girl to an eye doctor. You have to be atleast 6 or 7 at most eye exam places, so I have to call a pediatric ophthalmologist. Unfortunately, I learned, there are only 7 of them in the whole state of Utah, so they get booked up a few months out. They could see Sophi in April, but that's not going to work cause we're going to be in Brazil til July. I've called a few times to see if there are any cancellations before March 23rd, but there haven't been, and they don't keep a list for cancellations, so we're just out of luck for now. So, I feel bad that her vision will be suffering and I can't help her until July, but maybe we'll be able to see an eye doctor in Brazil. We'll see.
Sophi has such pretty eyes, and I like her little bangs too. They've grown out very well since Lily's gave her a haircut in August. So now I need to decide: Do I keep them trimmed or have her grow them out? Questions, questions.

I also learned a new word recently that relates to my angel child Sophi, cause she has started to become a little prickly and have an attitude. She's not 2 anymore, so it's not the "terrible twos" and she's not yet 4, so it's not the "feisty fours" that usually rear their ugly head around here. What do you call a feisty three year old? Well an article popped up on my facebook that had the answer - she's a "threenager"! How have I not heard "threenager" before?!? When I saw the title of this article, I was excited to find a name for the change in behavior, and very happy that it had a few tips for how to cope with a threenager. I've being more quick to give her hugs and kisses first thing, and it's helped a little.
One more thing on Sophi (cause I know I need to document the other kids more and not just blog about our Natalie obsession all the time...) ~ she's been coloring a lot lately. It's cute, even if she does color all over Abi's homework~
Or Melodie's planner~
Yes, it's best when she just uses regular paper.
Melodie was watching her draw on that paper and called us over to see the little face Sophi made.
We thought it looked a bit like Olaf. Cute, she's a little artist. Here's the smiley faces she did a year and a half ago - this one is just as cute. I bet she would have progressed more with her drawings if I was still drawing smiley faces for her all day long. But it's fun to see her getting into it again. She also gets lost in games with her "Aaah" toys ("Aaah" is "Ariel" from little mermaid, cause she sings "Ahh aahh Aaahhhhhh ahh aahh Aaahhhhhh...") Luckily we have lots of Aaah toys, from lego size, to Fisher Price little people size, to barbie, to the big dolls they got for Christmas. Abi led Lily and Sophi in a game with their big dolls over the weekend, I'll try to get a picture of that. It's cute.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Typical School Night

Here was our house last night (Tues 2/24). This is pretty much our typical school night.  It's 10:16. Natalie is usually not asleep yet, but that night she had crashed on the ottoman (hadn't had a nap) so I put her in her crib. The other girls were still playing dolls 
Hyrum's doing homework - drawing with markers using the back of the couch as his table. He could have used the table instead of the couch, but whatever works I guess. Just make sure you don't leave those markers out where your sisters will find them.
Joseph was on the floor with the tablet, trying to find the youtube video of their ballroom dance last Thursday night.
At the beginning he's second from left in the front, then later he starts on the right side of the stage, dancing partner has red gloves... you'll just have to see if you can find him.

Corey was helping Ethan with math homework. Ethan had been able to do 6 problems finding the circumference of a circle without knowing what the circumference of a circle was. Corey was impressed with his "just figure it out" determination. Good job Eth.
 Melodie was doing homework at another desk and computer.
Wesley was practicing the recorder, which he says doesn't like anymore. 
Such a sad "I don't want to do this" face.
And I have kept the kitchen counter clean and virtually clutter free for over three days now! I just have my water there and my planner, oh yeah go me.
And a half hour later, everyone is done enough that they're ready to call it a day, so we talk for a minute, read scriptures and say a prayer, and they start to knock off one by one. We used to put them all in their beds if they fell asleep while we read, but lately we just leave them and turn a lamp on so they can see if/when they wake up during the night. And there is a typical night at our house.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Joseph's Braces

Joseph got braces this morning. He's not sure what he thinks, saying "It makes me look like my teeth were really crooked..." cause he's got a full set on upper and lower teeth. His main problem was crowding, but if you move the bottom, you gotta move the top too, cause they need to be aligned. So that's what's going on with Joseph's teeth. He would have preferred invasalign, and I said sure if he wanted to pay the difference. For how much it is already (5K), he could have had a nice used car. Oh well!

I didn't take an after picture, but we'll get a photo of him after he comes home. :)

Ok, Joseph's home. Here he is ~
He said that he was showing his full teeth most of the day at school and would say "I'm a Piranha..." as he chomped his teeth, which totally made me laugh.
Yeah, Darla! That's the look you got now! Well, you're a good sport, Joseph. Sorry we didn't get these braces on you sooner. It was a honest mistake, I really didn't think you needed them. Now I think Corey and I could probably use some orthodontic care - they showed me all the before and after pictures on their tv during Joseph's consultation as he was getting his x-rays done, and I was like "Well those before teeth don't look so bad... but the after teeth looks awesome!" and now my teeth are not looking so perfect after all. So sad. And Corey has the crowding on bottom which was the same as Joseph. After we get all these kids "straightened out" and their used cars paid off of in a few years, I think I'll have Corey and I go in together, we can both get invisalign. As for you, Joseph, I know you have a metal mouth now, but it will be good for you... it builds character. :)

Saturday, February 21, 2015


Corey and I had a little anniversary get away this weekend. We spent last night at the Grand America, dinner at the Garden, and then we watched some show on Discovery about a group of people, we didn't know who they were... we were trying to figure it out as we watched with interest... cause they spoke English, but we couldn't tell where they were living, and they did have a peculiar accent... on one of the commercial breaks it finally said what the name of the show was - the Alaskan Bush People!! Well of course that is who they are! They seemed very pleased with their life in the wild, so more power to them. They spent the show building a new home and hoping they would beat the snow. Luckily they made it, whew! ...But their new house didn't appear to have any plumbing. And that's ~ okay. ...for them. I like our plumbing though. So that was fun to see the reality of another family on this planet. (No, we don't get out much), Then we watched another documentary on the Real American Sniper, that was interesting too. Corey read that book on his last trip to Brazil, I started it, good stuff. We flipped through the channels and I'd say whatever thought popped into my head like "that guy looks like a monkey" and Corey would say "I was just thinking "that guy looks like a monkey!"" And we were amazed at how we think the same. :)

Then this morning we watched more tv (cause we don't watch tv at home) about some Tanzanian Hunter and Gatherer civilization, the Hadza - "closest there is to the stone age" here on planet earth. Their numbers are dwindling though, there are only about 800 of them left. That was on Litton's Adventure weekend. The poor guys went hunting for food and after a few hours the only game they got was 3 squirrels for like 10 men! That would not cut it around our house with our little people - What a humble life. It was interesting. And then after that an infomercial for Body Beast came on, that we watched (as we continue to lay in bed and eat chocolates until 10:30) and we both resolved that we'd start to kick it back in gear, exercise-wise. I think Brazil will give us a great opportunity for that. We are going to take morning walks doing laps in the park across the street with all the local joggers. Then we walked around the hotel a while and talked and sat in lots of empty chairs and took pictures of each other before we checked out.
Do you like my executive desk?
It just seems so sad - all these lovely desks and chairs and credenzas and other fine furniture that I bet people don't sit at very often. So sad for the fine furnishings, they don't seem able to fulfill the measure of their creation very well, so we had to give them a few seconds of feeling of use and of service to a couple of hotel guests. It was nice and clean and quiet everywhere though, which was nice to enjoy for a night.
And then we went to the Salt Lake Temple for an endowment session. The Grand America does a pretty good job and being as fancy as the temple, but one of the differences is that there is meaning behind the temple. The hotel was very nice but, but there's no story, no real purpose. At the temple, the physical beauty there is just symbolic of the even greater beauty going on inside with the ordinances performed that make married and family relationships eternal. Cause who would care about living in a nice place if you were all alone? Not me. I want to be with Corey, our kids and our families forever. And we can because of our temple covenants. So grateful to have and have the time this weekend to celebrate our eternal marriage. 

So that was our weekend. The three older kids were at a ward youth conference. They left yesterday at 4 and are still there, they should be home in another hour. The conference included skiing at Brighton, so that is fun for them. The other 6 kiddos had a sleepover with Grandma and Grandpa Wride which they loved. Abi was very upset that they had to come home and the older kids aren't home yet, so unfair. Life is good. And I'm glad I don't live in the bushes of Alaska.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

16 Years

It's our 16th anniversary today. Here is Corey picking me up to go to the temple on that blessed day 16 years ago, the last time he'd ever have to pick me up from my parents' house, cause that night we got to leave together.
Best day ever. Actually maybe that's not true, cause there is another day that comes close ~ I recently told the kids the best day was 2 December 1998 after I got home from my mission, as that was a day I had marked on my calendar for a very long time, and was the day that I got to see and sit by and soon hold hands with Corey again. Although we had kissed before our missions, we didn't kiss that night. I remember when he dropped me off after a date to temple square, that he just hugged me and let out a big sigh of relief, relief that I felt too... happy relief that the long wait was over and the years were behind us, and now we could get on to our life together!
Yes, I had looked forward to December 2nd for a long time, so that was a best day ever cause that was the beginning of the best days. And our wedding day was just the cherry on top, the day that made our bond official and eternal. Every day since has been a better day, it just keeps getting better.
Here's one of our engagement photos. Young and in love ~
Now we're almost middle aged and even more love. It's great spending our days together. I love building a life with my best friend. We both give our relationship and our marriage 10 out of 10. We've got a great courtship and story. So grateful for how it's all turned out, even better than I could have imagined. 

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Natalie's Toes

Natalie is an engaged little toddler during scripture reading. She's also sometimes a purple winged fairy.
And we all just love to watch her toes!
It is so cute to watch her toes fidget and cross as she studies the pages flipping. She always gets a book and sits with it on her legs and will flip through the pages over and over. It's super cute to see her feet peeking over the top of the book as it covers the whole length of her leg.
The we all imagine what it would be like to sit and read a book that big that it covered all our legs. I didn't put them away last night, so this morning she picked up one of the books off of the floor and did her personal study.
Love love her toes, I can't get enough of how cute she is. When the kids are home and Natalie is looking at books, we'll all just watch her and giggle, we just love this little girl and her toes!

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Sitting at the Bar

Natalie is fighting for equal rights again - this time her demand is to sit on the stools like all the other children, no more of this high chair nonsense. Corey put her up at the island while he made crepes. Makes me nervous!
Natalie - you realize there is nothing to protect you from falling off and bonking your head on the floor that is very very far down, right?
Are you ready to take that risk? Or shall I just stand behind you everytime you eat now? How's that crepe?
Why does everything she do just seem so adorable? The way she studies her food, the way she tries to fork the food...
The way she shoves the whole thing into her mouth...
She way she tries to chew the whole thing...
Such a sweet little girl pretending she's such a big girl.
Then the next day, again, demanding fair treatment, she sat at the bar for breakfast.
Trying to eat her shredded wheat crumbs. (I told her it was gone, but everyone else had some, so no cheerios, she wants the shredded wheat too!)
And Natalie, you know that you just have the sweetest big baby girl eyes in the world, don't you?
As I go through this pregnancy and feel a little tortured, I just look at Natalie and any of the kids and remember and know it will all be worth it to have another little BFF for forever and ever and ever! 

Monday, February 16, 2015

February Party

We had our family February party tonight, in celebration of Love, Valentine's Day, our anniversary, and all things red and pink. The kids helped with much of the preparations, I did most of the room decorating. They helped set the table and prepare food. We were all set to go around the time the sun was setting, which helped with the ambiance ~
Here's a few pictures of the dinner party preparations

I put our wedding video on to help them contain their excitement and all sit in one place while I went and put on a red dress.
Corey and I have a pretty fun and great courtship story, if I do say so myself.

After the movie was over we sat down at the table. 
You kids ready to dig in?
I made a perfect amount of dinner food and it all got served up and eaten, and after dinner was done we opened up the dessert buffet ~ we had extras there by the evening end, which they were glad to eat for breakfast, cake for breakfast!

Natalie's glass was plastic, but she still made me nervous cause she's grab it with such eagerness, she seemed to be about to topple her seating companion's drinks on a few goes. She did pretty good for her first time sitting at the table for a fancy dinner. I still kept my eye on her most of the time. I think we need a bigger table!
Then the mess to clean up after, it looked like we'd just had a party
After we cleaned up most of the kitchen, Corey took the kids dancing in the front room, it was fun. Got a few videos of it. There wasn't enough of dad to go around and Sophi and Abi did quite a bit of weeping and wailing when it was someone else's turn.
"We are a happy family!" 
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