Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Quick funny

Today I heard Olivia say, "Ow you hit me in my ball!" to Nathan. I asked her, "What? Where did he hit you?" And she said, "In my BALL! MY EYE BALL. Isn't that what you can call it? Your balls? Eye balls? Same thing?"

I'm still laughing out loud.

Monday, December 22, 2014

My children are my greatest examples of Christ like love.

This is a lady I work with at church. I occasionally teach her reading lessons and just keep an eye on her. She is a very... interesting person. And I can't say that every time I have a free moment, I want to spend that free time with her. I don't want to go into all the details here for the whole world to see, she's a very sweet lady... but challenging. However, my kids LOVE her with absolutely no reservations. They are such good examples to me of unconditional, Christ like love. I mean just look at that Eliza SMILE! (And those pigtails, don't forget the pigtails... they kill me.)

Anyway, my big girls are sick. Puking, fever, nasty sick. Aaron is working a lot this week. Christmas is in 3 days, we leave for NJ in 4 days... and I've spent the last two days doing nothing but cuddling sick babies and cleaning puke. However, my kitchen is still clean thanks to a wonderful husband who stayed up last night cleaning it for me. *swoon*  I literally broke down in tears when I came into my kitchen to start cleaning it this morning (before any of the kids woke up and I actually had an hour to get something done). It was all done. Clean, and done. And I was so grateful I cried. Another great example in my life, that husband of mine. So I spent that hour listening to an audio book and crocheting. It was a lovely start to my day, that didn't end so lovely.

Sometimes Yuma is the worst place ever. I try to love it here, and a lot of times I do, but today, it was awful. So many miserable people, just angry and bitter, about what I don't know. That's the problem with Yuma, when the weather is gorgeous, the people stink. And when the stinky people go away, so does the nice weather. I do love our home, and my family, and I know my kids are happy here, so I shouldn't complain. And there are plenty of amazing, great people who live here all year long that I am grateful to know. Today I just didn't see many of them (any of them) but unfortunately saw lots of dirty looks and rude comments. Usually they don't get to me, because for every grumpy person I encounter at least one nice one... today all the nice ones must have stayed home. And I think the fact that I let my kids go out in public in their PJ's, with unbrushed hair, and I myself looked a wreck, didn't help people's opinions of me.

If only we could all love like my kids.

Friday, December 19, 2014


Okay this is a horrible picture, but you can kind of tell what it is right? This is a field near my house, and that is a man sitting at the edge, looking kind of sad. He had his head down in his hands. I noticed him, but didn't think much about it. Then I heard Nathan's little voice from the back seat saying, "Look! That man lost his mommy." 
And that really touched my heart. This guy looked really sad and kind of lost sitting there, and I love that Nathan thought "Hm, the only reason that anyone be like that was because they didn't have their mommy." And it made me realize again how important my job is. 
There are so many times when it really doesn't feel that way. Of course I always know in my heart that I'm doing the most important work in the world, but it's very easy to lose sight of that through the course of dirty dishes, mountains of laundry, and general care taking of 4 small people.
And then every once in a while something happens to remind you.
Something like a 3 year old letting you know, in his own way, that without you he would be completely lost.
I'm pretty sure I've written a post just like this before, but it was Olivia or Abigail saying something similar. I really treasure these moments, in case you couldn't tell. They are too few and far between. Or perhaps just too often overlooked.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Nathan is 3!

My phone has been taking THE WORST pictures lately. If you are thinking of buying your loved one a new smartphone this Christmas, definitely pass on the HTC 1 M8... its camera seriously sucks. At least for busy moms who don't have the time to play around with it. If it's not as simple as "Click camera icon." I'm not going to figure it out. So here are some very poor quality pictures of my little boy.

Nathan one on one is my all time favorite thing ever. He's so sweet, and funny and just pleasant to be around. Put him around his sisters and it's a whole other story... but let's focus on the sweet! We went grocery shopping together, just him and I and he was seriously a little gentleman. He got me cans from the bottom shelf that were hard for me to reach, and he held my hand, and it was just great.

A funny story from fairly recently... If you someone says, "Hey!" in this house lately the girls have been responding with, "Hey is for horses, I'll feed ya later!" And cracking up laughing. So they will try to make you say hey, just so they can say their little joke. So the other day Nathan said, "Mommy, mommy, say hey." I said "Hey!" And he paused then said, "Hey... horse.. poop." You could just see him thinking, like I know I'm supposed to say something about horses, and it's something funny... so yeah horse poop. But hay is horse poop, so really Nathan's joke is the funniest. We all laughed pretty hard about that one.

I'm not sure what else to say about this boy of mine. I love putting him to bed at night and singing him his little lullaby that I've been singing him for almost three years now. He sings along and holds my hand and then asks me to leave the door open, every single night. He wets the bed like 60% of the time. He really doesn't care if he pees in his pants if he's got something more important going on. He hasn't been to school yet, but he'll probably start next year. He loves playing at the YMCA, but only if his sisters are there so we'll see how he does. 

Tuesday, December 9, 2014


       I let the whole month of November get away from me without ever doing a grateful blog post. What kind of blogger am I? Honestly.

     And what I'm grateful for is obvious, and cliche, probably because it's the most wonderful thing on this planet. My family. My husband and my children. And of course my parents, siblings, siblings in law, etc. But I want to write about my husband and children.
     These amazing, loud, goofy people I get to spend all of my days with. And when I say loud, I mean LOUD. These kids don't do inside voices. Even the baby. Especially the baby. When she sees something exciting the entire world knows it. It is probably obnoxious to all the grumpy people in the world, but it makes me laugh my head off. Today walking around WalMart she did not stop squealing and pointing at everything. Everything was, "OOOH! OOOHH!" But not a soft quiet oooh, more like a loud screeching sound that is impossible for me to reproduce with text. And if she wasn't so darn happy and cute I would probably find it obnoxious as well.
      And my kids are generally loud. They play lots, and have great imaginations, and they get way into these in depth games they invent. It's a loud process. But it takes on a whole new level of loud whenever I decide to actually answer my phone when it rings. Forget me making a phone call. I can't voluntarily subject anyone to that, unless I'm in the car, they're all strapped in and a movie is on. Speaking of gratitude... DVD players built into cars is God' gift to moms. I can't think of a single thing that makes my life easier. Best. Invention. Ever.
    But today I was talking briefly to a friend who is single, who has no children and it was SO quiet on her end of the phone. And I thought, she must think it sounds like I'm at the zoo! And I wondered for a moment if she hung up the phone and her heart felt heavy and sad because she didn't have a zoo going on in the background of her house, and I know she wants nothing more than a family of her own. So I said a prayer of thanks for all that I have. That I have these crazy, loud children that make my life rich. I couldn't imagine how hard the holidays would be if we didn't have kids to teach, be Santa to, and just fill us with so much joy.
      These little rascals of mine have kept me from sleep the past few nights. And I'm so exhausted I'm not even sure what I'm typing anymore. Aaron, if you read this, please edit for me. But I just needed to write how incredibly lucky I think I am to have these children I love so dearly, and my husband who is the most fiercely loyal, loving man I could have ever imagined. Who lives to make us smile, and does whatever he can to make me happy. I am one lucky woman indeed.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Eliza 10 months

This cute baby is almost 11 months... which is almost one... which is practically a grown up! How does this happen so fast?
I'm loving the fact that she's still crawling every where. She'll walk holding your hand, but hasn't taken any steps on her own yet. 

This is her petrified of Frosty the Snowman face. We have a little plush toy thingy my aunt got us that sings and dances. She went from screaming bloody murder every time it turned on, to just making this frightened face.

She waves "hiiii" and "bye" to everyone she sees. Strangers are seriously her favorite thing ever. She loves attention from random people, and will willingly climb into their arms if they reach for her at all. She's just the most lovable little thing.
She loves being read to, all things fuzzy, her crib bumper, clapping hands, peek-a-boo, her purple cup (won't drink from the pink one?!) and above all, her siblings.

She doesn't know how to be quiet or still. She is always on the go, exploring and figuring things out. She growls as she crawls around. She squeals (sounds more like a scream) whenever she is excited, which is often. If all the big kids are being loud playing, she will just randomly start making loud noises, as to be part of the chaos. She is also in the garbage disposal stage that all of my kids gone through. There is a certain age where they will eat absolutely everything you put in front of them, and never seem to be full. So far there has only been one food Eliza has ever encountered that she didn't want more of (pina colada italian ice, and I can't say I blame her on that one, it wasn't as good as it sounds).

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Busy busy busy

It's that time of year where busy is just the way it is. I try to scale back but making fun, wholesome, happy memories with my kids is my all time favorite thing about motherhood. So I tend to go a little overboard this time of year.

I made an advent calender with an a little activity for every day for the month of December. Each activity has some sort of spiritual element + something fun. Like today we went to A Walk Through Bethlehem, which really just a display of over 300 nativities, but we had a great time. And miraculously the kids did wonderfully. Somehow we got in and out without them touching anything! Then I took the girls to see Yuma Community Theater's production of, "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever!".  It was really cute. It's based on a little book, I highly recommend. It's a super fast easy read with a great Christmas message.

Nathan's fake smile is one of the worst fake smiles ever. But the only way to get a real smile is to say poop or something, and that just wasn't happening at the church thing! Olivia is wearing the skirt I made her two and a half years ago (Thanks again Geneva!) and Abigail is wearing a headband I crocheted. I decided to deactivate my facebook account for the month of December. I waned to be able to have less distractions. Instead I replaced checking facebook with crocheting. All. The. Time.
I'm not very good, but I did make this bow:

And this crown for my cat. 
Well, I didn't start out making a crown for my cat. I just wanted to see if I could follow a pattern. This is actually a crown for a little stuffed bear. But when I finished it and the cat hopped on my lap, it just clicked.

I've been all sorts of crafty lately. It's been good for my soul, and bad for my laundry pile.
Cake I made for my nieces birthday.

Thanksgiving shirts I made for all the Opie grandkids, that were at dinner. One sister-in-law wasn't there with her baby, so he didn't get a shirt. But I made 9 cute turkey shirts, and the kids loved them. I just thought it would be fun, and it was. I don't think I have many years left where my kids will be excited to be matching, so I figured I better capitalize on that cuteness while I can.

Making a giant mess... er, gingerbread cookes.

Plus keeping up with this 10 month old gets more challenging every day. She just goes around trying to see what she can get into. At least she has the best smile, and super sweet disposition to make up for her "curiousness".  And my big kids are actually pretty helpful, at least some of the time. They love to play with her and make her laugh, so it is easier than when my big girls were this age.

Well now that I've found yet another thing to do besides fold my laundry, it's almost 10:00PM so I can go to bed now and put it off another day.

Monday, November 24, 2014

More Disneyland Pictures!

I've never uploaded pictures this way before, I'm not sure if it will work. And if you click on it, it might take you to a random cloud website where there are ton of pictures from Aaron's phone. Or it might not. I honestly don't know. But Aaron got some better pictures than I did. And both of our phones died halfway through the second day, so we only have pictures from the first part of the day. Such fun times.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Disneyland 2014... Pictures!

Nathan had a rough first day. He really wasn't feeling well. He threw many fit. We just kept reminding ourselves, "At least his ticket was still free!"

And he still managed to smile and have a good time for most of the trip.

It's Tough To Be A Bug... most terrifying show at Disneyland!

Olivia asked Brer Fox where Brer Rabbit was, and this was his reaction. Along with rubbing his tummy. 

You can't hear Eliza's terrified scream, but it's there.
This is the closest we got to a family picture. I got these cute outfits with the idea that we'd take a family picture in front of the castle for our Christmas cards. Yeah, didn't happen.

Nathan LOVED the characters this trip.

What a stinker!

And don't let this one's smile fool you. She kept us up ALL night, before our last day in the park.

Olivia got to "drive" on Indiana Jones, and she was SO excited about it.

It was a very spontaneous trip, but I'm so glad we did it. We had so much fun and the kids are still talking about it. We stuffed Nathan's shoes with extra socks and spiked his hair the second day, so he was able to go on all the big rides. He LOVED it. Except, I'm pretty sure he thinks Space Mountain ACTUALLY takes you to outer space. He keeps asking me if I remember when we went on a rocket to outer space. His favorite was definitely Thunder Mountain. He didn't want to get off. Olivia's favorite was Indiana Jones, and Abigail's favorite was Cars Racers (Which Nathan DIDN'T get to go on! We hadn't properly padded his shoes that day, so he was a hair too short. SO MANY TEARS!")

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Sometimes you have a day where this isn't even the worst mess you clean up. Yes, that's hot pink lip gloss and it was my favorite of all time. And now it's all over my laundry, including my third favorite shirt, and Nathan's brand new church shirt. Fortunately, the rest of the clothes I don't care too much about. It was towels, and some jeans that were past their prime anyway. And you probably just learned something new about me, no I do not separate my laundry. I never have, and I've never had a problem. And I'm lazy, so that's how it goes. Unfortunately, due to that laziness I never check pockets, and maybe some day I'll learn. Because I'm really sad about that lip gloss.

But this was just one of many messes I cleaned up on Tuesday. The first was a result of Eliza getting her diaper off during nap time. I'll spare you the very disgusting details, but just know this. I smelled it before I saw it.

Also not pictured, a gallon of grape juice, an entire happy meal, and every other every day mess that you know is just part of life with four kids.

It was a rough day. Just so many frustrations in such a short period of time, and it happened to be on a day where Aaron was working a 13 hour shift. Not fun!

However, through most of it I just laughed. I was frustrated, but not paralyzingly overwhelmed. At one point I did think, "Heavenly Father I have been praying SO much lately. And I've been reading my scriptures EVERY DAY, and I'm serving people like all the time. So c'mon, where are those blessings you promised me??" And then I looked around me and realized how incredibly ridiculous I was being. I looked at my home, and my wonderful children, and thought of my hard working husband and I realized how blessed I was. And that by doing all those things that I should be doing, I can realize these as the blessings they are. I can have an eternal perspective and know that all of these frustrations are so temporary. And in that they are so much easier to bear.

And for the record, the past two days have been much less frustrating.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Life lately update

One time I was really ambitious and decided, "It's 4:30, I don't feel like cooking dinner, let's all bike ride to the park." And that was one of my worst ideas ever. Olivia is barely proficient enough to handle it. Abigail really wasn't ready. And Nathan didn't make it to the end of the street. So now I'm cajoling along Abigail, telling her to just keep pedaling, stop getting off her bike to examine ants, and just ride her bike, while pushing a double stroller that has Nathan, Eliza, and Nathan's bike. And Olivia is riding too far ahead for my comfort so I'm having to constantly yell at her to slow down and stop at the corner. And then she fell, and gashed her knee open on a rock. But by the sound of her screams you might have thought she lost a limb. And she didn't want to turn around and go home, she wanted to keep going, so we went. Though she never stopped complaining about the pain. Very loudly. Then we had to cross a fairly busy street. We were in the crosswalk, crossing the street when a car came. It stopped at the stop walk, it had a stop sign, but Olivia just froze. And stood there in the middle of the street. So now I'm screaming like a lunatic, and she finally moves. It was very stressful. But in the end we made it all in one piece to the park. And it was worth it (maybe) because I got these awesome pictures of Abigail and Eliza.

A friend gave me a bunch of g diapers. I don't think I would have ever used them if she didn't give them to me, but I love them. I feel all fancy and like I'm saving the earth, plus they're super cute. Eliza liked showing them off.

My kids were horrible about throwing away their candy wrappers. Eliza loved finding wrappers with little bits of candy still stuck to them. Here she found a lollipop that was basically gone, but she enjoyed the last little bit of sweetness on the end of that stick.

Abigail and I got to do some birthday shopping. She got a butterfly garden, a dora plaything, a doc mcstuffins play thing, and this little kitten with a bed for her dollhouse. Money well spent. We had a great time. I love this little weirdo of mine.

And just because Nathan is seriously under represented on this blog, here is a picture of my sweet boy riding one of the stick horses I made for Abigail's birthday. But really you're just looking at my messy house, aren't you? I hope it makes you feel about yourself. Or is that just me? I don't know how you moms do it, with your clean houses and your clean kids. That happens about once a week around here. I should take more pictures on that day.

Abigail's birthday was fun. And now we're planning Thanksgiving festivities, and then we'll be planning Nathan's birthday, then Christmas, and then Eliza's first birthday! I LOVE this time of year. Who doesn't?