Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Odds and Ends

We've been busy as usual but nothing major to report. We've just been playing . . .and doing crafts:

I got this kit from Oriental trading (sorry I can't find it to add a link) with 30 individual crafts instead of a dozen of one craft. So I bought 2 boxes and we have projects for a while. They are enjoying their sun necklaces and today we started on cowboy picture frames.

We've also been going to the gardens:

The tulips are SO gorgeous right now. We went Saturday for the tulip festival and the boys did well--saw the flowers had some windmill cookies and drop (salted black licorice, you know you're Dutch if you like (love!) this stuff) and then had lunch with the fam. They were smart because they then went home and napped while the rest of us went back and were rained and hailed on! Crazy weather, I know how to pick the craziest weather days. We still enjoyed it though and it was good to see my grandma. We went back last night for another crazy weather day. We took family pics in a wind storm :(. Here's hoping they turn out even though our hair was whipping everywhere. I have to give props to our brave photographer and neighbor who I visit teach, Amanda. She is awesome and an outstanding value, $50 for the sitting and she gives you the disk so you can print as many as you want. Here's her blog if you are interested : http://cheapshots4you.blogspot.com/ . Here's another one: http://www.morethanmemoriesphotography.blogspot.com/ --this is a nurse at my hospital who is very talented and as sweet as they come. Check them both out if you are in Utah county looking for a photographer. I'll post the pics when we get them back.

We also hit up the 40% off sale at Spaghetti Factory--for Tuesdays through May--thanks for the tip Jillian! It was yum-o!

We've also been playing in the rain:



In the darling Nike jogging suits that my grandparents got the boys for Christmas. It make me laugh so much because my grandpa is always wearing a jogging suit, so now they would fit right in with him. Such a nice gift too--it was perfect for playing in the wet weather Saturday afternoon.

Since then we have had a peek at the sun and enjoyed it by playing outside:
and driving the Power Wheels since Daddy finally found the missing battery chargers.

We love Daddy! The boys and papa with matching In n Out Vegas shirts.

So that's what we've been doing. I finally finished reading Congo and am looking forward to watching the movie tonight. I liked it, though it was completely different than I was anticipating. I adore Michael Crichton, so fast paced and scientific, it suits my style well. I am looking forward to reading his last couple of books once they are released. I have moved on to Gone with the Wind, my BFF Kristina's fav book. I am enjoying it thus far. I also read Midnight Sun for the second time and am almost done with Twilight again (4th time) in between. I am already anxious for New Moon's release--they are filming now! and so excited to hear Eclipse will be released next June, much sooner than I was expecting. I am already planning a New Moon party--I hope to watch Twilight on a big screen at Lowell's school and then move on to the midnight showing.

The only other excitement here is swine flu. Working in the lab we see these "pandemics" come through once in a while and there is quite the excitement for a while. We have run 10 flus in the last 2 days, the average this time of year would be 0-1. My advice to those concerned is, you're not going to get it. If you do feel flu like, it's still probably not H1N1 (swine flu) but go get some antivirals and you will be fine. The upside--the CDC recommends anyone feeling flu-like to take 7 days off work (the incubation period) so now is a good time to be "sick". Cough Cough.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Escape Artists or Why I'm not in a hurry to have more kids

One of the nurses at work today asked me if it was about time that we should have more kids. Innocent enough question, she followed by asking the boys' age (3 and a half) and used that as a premise for why we should. I thought should I give the reasons why we should not have more kids in alphabetical order or in order of severity? In all seriousness we absolutely adore our babies and feel the Lord does indeed plan for us to have more children (though He knew what he was sending us first so his time table can't be too set). We feel being a parent is a supremely important role for us in this life and growing our eternal family is a matter of great consequence to us. With that said, I shared these 2 stories as a reason why we haven't yet planned more children.

Yesterday morning I went to get the boys up as usual. I started with Carter though a casual glance of his room did not produce my child. He likes to hide and I wasn't in the mood for seeking at the moment (long night on call) so I went on to Davis's room knowing Carter would come out when he wanted to. I was chatting with Davis when the doorbell rang. I was just in my robe and debating on answering it at all but figured anyone who came to my house this early would get what they get (plus I figured it was the mail man dropping something off). It was quite a surprise to me when I found my super-man jammie clad son standing grinning on my door step. A glance to his window answered the obvious question--he had unlocked his window, slid it open, and climbed out pushing the screen aside. He could have been roaming the neighborhood for a half hour for all I know but my guess is he straight away rang the bell. What is it with my children and wanting to escape? Seriously, is my house that bad? Those kids have more toys and candy than they know what to do with! Lowell stopped by Home Depot on his way home and the boys are now locked in both by window and door. Before I could even get them dressed I found this scene: They had pushed their car to the tallest point of grass and were attempting to scale the fence. I don't think they thought through the drop on the other side very well or the fact that our neighbor's yard has no toys like those in their own. Luckily they have a couple of inches of height before they will clear the fence, then who knows what I will do. We have already had to dead-bolt the fence doors. My house the prison.

My second story was from this afternoon just before I left for work. I thought I would check the kiddos before I left as poor tired Lowell (because of said crazy kids doesn't get to bed until past 11 and still gets up before 5 for work) was already out cold. The kids were supposed to be napping but as I peeked in on Davis I found him squatting in the corner pooping on the floor. There is nothing more nasty to me than fecal matter. Working in my profession just makes it nastier. Blood and urine don't bother me a bit--I don't even wear gloves. Stool is another matter altogether. So I was quite alarmed finding my son this way and even more alarmed by his next step--he picked up the poop and put it in the potty in his room and then asked for his sticker! Umm . . .nope not how that works. And oh yuck yuck yuck. And have you ever actually gone in the potty or is this what you have been doing. And why in the world can you poop on the floor but not in the potty. And I better stop wondering and just get you cleaned up--I am going to be late for work. Grody gross gross.

Anywho, we are not in a hurry for more children. Our hands are abundantly full with the ones we have, I can't keep them clean and contained how could I handle another? Someday the boys will be potty trained (please please please) and more manageable but for now we are just "enjoying" our bountiful blessings. :)

We did have some fun the past couple of days as well. Monday we met the twin club at the gardens for a day of fun and belated Easter egg hunting. It was really fun, the boys followed around an older boy like little puppy dogs and I even saw some little guys following them around. So funny how they look up to older kids. It was delightful chaos for the most part. Here's some pics:


Watching the waterfall

Carter (who by the way had pooped in his potty at the same time as Davey's escapade)
Davis (doesn't he look innocent?)

Rolling down the hill
Then last night we met up with my long lost friend Chrystal and her cutie cute boys and went to Farm Country. It was so delightful to visit and catch up--I love having friends. We met competing for the same job at BYU nearly 10 years ago. We didn't know they were hiring 2 people--both of us.
I'm looking forward to this weekend and hoping the weather holds out for us. Saturday is Dutch Day at the gardens and my grandma is coming down as well as some aunts and uncles. We are having a BBQ and time to stroll. The Dutch store is going to be there with samples and traditional Dutch music will be playing. It should be a great day to introduce the boys to some of their heritage. And to visit with family, an added bonus.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Spring Break Part 2: "Begas Baby"

What a whirlwind couple of days! It's hard to believe I was sitting here talking about Vegas early Thursday morning, and here I am Saturday morning home again. We are such a crazy bunch! I really can't believe I talked Lowell into it this time, but it was his idea to begin with. All 3 of my boys were really good on this trip, maybe I am wearing them down with my constant desire to travel. I am feeling spoiled with how easy it is to pick up and go with my 3.5 year olds. I am thinking that when another little one joins our family (no announcement there or even plan to start thinking about trying) it won't be so easy. Not that that would stop me from wanting another one, just that I guess I better take advantage of what I have while it last. So just a reminder of why I wanted to leave this frosty wonderland:This was my sad little car as I left work Thursday morning. You can just make out the left (back) wheel. This is mid-April mind you. I had to dig and dig with the container from my dinner to just get the door open to get to the snow scraper. It was a 15 minute job before I could even leave. I was definitely ready for some sun! And now I have a tan, hooray! Plus in the meantime all the snow melted so I can try and pretend the silly fluke storm never even happened.

Anywho, we got on the road a little later than planned (when doesn't that happen?!) and drove away along the long strip of I-15 south. The boys took less than an hour nap but were decent in the car with the DVD and some different toys to keep them going. We checked into the Excalibur (Castle!) and got settled before venturing the strip. This was my first time actually staying on the strip so that was cool though the Excalibur is certainly not the high end of the strip. The kids thought it was the best one though, so it worked out. Can you believe we left our hotel at 9 pm (10 pm Utah time!). We are so crazy, but there is so much to see at night in Vegas that you just can't see any other time.


Here are my sweeties waiting for the Bellagio fountain show (Paris Eiffel tower in the background)

They loved the show, who wouldn't? I adore the Bellagio fountains!

Carter laughing as the wind sprayed the water on his face

This is how they insisted on being pushed down the strip, holding hands! It was cute but not practical on that busy street.

Davis and Daddy watching the Mirage volcano. We also cruised over and caught a portion of the Treasure Island show, we missed the first part and deemed the end "inappropriate" but the boys both said it was the their favorite part of the trip, so what they saw of it must have been enough. We trodded our way back to the hotel getting in after 11 (midnight for us). What tired bubbas they were (the parents too).

Lowell and I each slept with one of the kiddos and that was sweet, they are such snuggly loveable little fellows . . .who were up early nonetheless (7:30 in Vegas).

And who vented their energy by jumping on the bed

And leaping from one bed to another. It was cool, they were happy and so were we. We were on vacation after all.

View from our window. Davis: "Daddy, this is the castle, then where is the princess?" Daddy: "Mommy is the princess" :)

So off we went on a full day of Vegas!

Visiting the M&M store


The dolphins at The Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat. Davis especially loved the dolphins, me too! Especially baby Bella, so cute!

The boys who actually asked me to take their picture. Uhhh . . .okay. They were pretty fiesty and not patient enough to fully enjoy the rare white lions and tigers. It was a bummer but Carter was out with Lowell in time out pretty quickly.

Davis and I did enjoy watching the trainer work with the 5 month old leopard cub, he was SO cute.

Back down the long strip, feeling longer all the time after pushing strollers up and back so many time, we stopped in at the Coke store and did the taste of the world. We do it every time and each time pick new favs. I quite liked the lemon soda from England. The boys liked drinking excessive amounts of sugar laced soda and then laughing so much they spilled it on themselves. They were not allowed to get out of their strollers in the glass filled store. Next we hit up a Vegas classic, the buffet! Yeah for me this one was nearly free thanks to my deal finding!

Good thing too because Lowell and I had to eat as fast as we could knowing the boys wouldn't last. Even with fruit and juice and "noodles cheese" in front of them they were beyond tired and very very edgy. We had planned to go to the Mandalay Bay aquarium next but when Carter was begging for his bed we decided to just call it a day and jump back in the car for the l o n g drive home. They were alseep in 10 minutes but woke up less than 30 minutes later and stayed awake even though we didn't get home until 11:30. Poor little trashed babies! Silly boys for not sleeping too, at least they weren't very bad on the drive. All in all I would call the trip a success though we don't have plans to head back to Vegas any time soon. As many fun things as there are on the strip I always seem to forget just how sleezy it is too. How my throat always aches afterward from the smoke and you can't look at the ground. Grimy nasty blech! Glad to be home again but we did have a good time.

If you feel like it, here's the boys chattering about "Begas" as we drove out of town.


video

Just checked with Lowell and they slept until 10 this morning, hooray, but were very sad to not be at the castle and are ready to go back. Someday I'm sure. . .

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Spring Break Part 1

Last post, I promise! It's 12:30 and I need some rest. But I was beginning to feel really behind and hate trying to catch up. So this week our school district is out for Spring Break and since Lowell works for the district, this means play time for our family. We absolutely adore when Daddy is home, although I abuse him too much in my zeal to go and do. Tuesday we went to the zoo once more before my pass expires. My little explorers laughing as daddy bounces them. They love these little hats and they seemed suited to the activities of the day. Rain was threatening off and on, but it wasn't bad, just enough to keep the crowds down.

Carter on the carousel, the hand-carved wood animals are SO cool.

Davis on the ape

And one lonely little goose. But oh what a funny story involves him! I am certain this proves me a bad parent as Lowell and I laughed so hard we cried at our children's misfortune. They decided they wanted to pester poor Mr. Goose. He kept hissing at them but they kept getting closer. Both little boys crept up on him when he stood up and with his mouth open and wings out began chasing them. I've never seen them turn so quick or move so fast. They screamed like little girls and wouldn't stop running until they were well past the goose (who stopped pretty much as soon as they turned around). We were laughing so hard, it was terrible. We warned them though, they weren't hurt, and I was glad they got a healthy dose of leaving animals alone.

The next project of the day was picking up some computers I have been wanting for the kids. They LOVE the computer games at the dino museum so I did a little research and it turns out you can get old running computers pretty cheap on ksl. I got 2 computers (both of which are better than our current laptop) with monitors, keyboards, and mice plus the nice gentleman threw in a printer and a scanner for $75. The crazy drive through Midway to find the guy almost made it not worth it, but Davis's excited exclamation (oh my goodness, oh my goodness!) when he realized he could now play his dino game at our house compensated for that. Part of the computer project was converting Lowell's old "man cave" into my new preschool room. He had sold the TV and Xbox 360 that were in there after we got the wii, so it was pretty much just wasted space waiting for reassignment. Poor Lowell is left with the shed as his only haven now. :( Anyway, here is the before pic:


This was at 9:30 pm yesterday, yes I pick ridiculous times to start projects.

And here's the after. Computer desk, craft table with projects, and a reading/snuggling area (bean bag) (i.e. where mommy will be sitting while the kids play on the 'puters.

And my little project to cover up the ugly orange stripe that came with the house. Sure I could paint it, but coloring my shifts away has been more fun.

So today Carter finally got to cash in on his 25 stickers from his potty chart and go bowling. He didn't seem quite as into it as Davis, but was enjoying the attention none the less.

Carrying the big (8 lb) ball--just like his bro he refused to let me help. He had no way of knowing what his brother did on his turn, but he even had the same request, he wouldn't bowl until I was sitting down. Strange twin thing I guess.

Go ball go!

Cheering daddy on with his double thumbs up. I'll give Mr. C a double thumbs up--he reached his 25 last week and has already added another 11 stickers. He passed Davis up today. He finally caught on to pooping in the potty. Holy cow, could I be more excited! Maybe all the bitter was to make this more sweet. I mean if he figured this all out a year ago I couldn't have appreciated just what a big deal it is. I hardly dare to even say it (hate to jinx it) but the kid hasn't had any accidents in a week. I think he may be potty trained (ready to shed a tear over here!). Davis seems like he is (hopefully please please be merciful on this tired twin mommy) a few days or a week behind Carter. Here's hoping I'm right.

Final score, Daddy and Davis did better on their outing. We only did the one game as I had to go to work and Davis was bored doing the 2nd one so we just skipped it for Carter.

Finally, you may have noticed this post is titled Spring Break Part 1. That is because there is a part 2! The Goblin Valley plans have gone by the wayside. A combination of poor weather conditions and no room at the inn--everything is booked, some 4 wheeler convention or something in Moab. So we are putting it off for another time (no such luck Lowell, I won't forget). I am actually hoping to coerce my darling friend Kris to meet me 1 hour farther than the middle (she lives in Denver) to camp in Arches (Moab) and then cruise over to Goblin. Have to see how the summer unfolds. Anywho as I am never one to let a day off slide we made the last minute hasty decision to go to Vegas after seeing this today:

Yes this was as I walked into work today. Ugh! According to my last courier it has only gotten worse, he says it's the worst roads he has seen all year. I don't know for myself because there are no windows in the lab and they never let me out, so I just pretend I am in Hawaii all the time. So we are busting out tomorrow and leaving this lousy snow packed state for some sunshine and craziness. Wish us safety and sanity! Loves!

An Outrageous Amount of Easter (Part 3)

Finally it was Easter day. The kiddos woke up to this gift the Easter Bunny (or Bunny Easter as they call him) so considerately left them in the morning so as to keep them occupied while Daddy went to Stake Conference and Mommy made Easter Brunch for her whole family. Such a considerate Rabbit!It worked, they had a lot of fun until I put it all away once they started losing the marbles.
I managed to get a couple of cute pics before they got dirty, on threat of no Jello until they smiled!

Sadly I could only find one of their bunnies, so they had to share.

Davis


Carter
And yes, then they got Jello--Davey eating an entire Jello egg at once. Well, not really, next he spit it out and got it all over his shirt (their outfits were washed 3 times in 2 days).

First egg hunt of the day, this was just them (only grandkids on my side until September) and my fam watching on. We were overjoyed to have grandpa with us this year who helped to hide the eggs and toys.

Carter on the move

I like the excitement in this shot as he found an egg in the playhouse
Way blurry, but I still like the backs of my little men walking in with their treats, they look so little!

Davis with his loot! I actually remembered the next day I had another present for them, it's a sad sign of an over-eager shopper when you can miss one and not notice! I need to cancel my Toys R Us email subscription, how can I pass up a toy sale???

We have a tradition of having a dog easter egg hunt each year as well. It is just treats thrown all over the yard, but trust me, they love it! They were finding treats for days!
The boys testing the abilities of their bubble guns, after they figured out this would work on the kitchen table as well.
Sunday night we had Lowell's family over for a repeat of the lunch activities. More ham, more eggs to find, I love it!

These were the cute eggs Lowell's mom brought, they were all different animals and plants and fairies, SO cute!

Carter with his loot, part 2

Davis too. They had fun searching with cousins Hannah and Alivya but missed Dylan in Texas of course! Maybe next year! Now they have more toys and candy than they know what to do with--I'm rationing it of course. It was a really enjoyable Easter spent with family.