Thursday, May 30, 2013

Preschool program

Sanders had his preschool graduation at the exact same time as Karaia and Tennyson's soccer games. Who's ready for summer? THIS family! 

Sanders was hilarious. He only recently began to think that singing was "cool". Before that, any time I sang to him or asked him to sing he would only tolerate it and that was only if the song was on his short list. A list that mainly consists of Thomas the Train songs. I was over the moon when I Am a Child of God made the cut. 

Church songs were always met with glares and then lectures about how much he didn't like church songs. He happens to call this song the God song. I don't care what he calls it. I'm just glad he will let me add to our playlist and more importantly sing part of it with me.

But I digress. Sanders loved his program. He was wiggly and excited. He knew most of the actions and occasionally graced us with a word or two of the song. I know he knows more because he sings to himself now and again. But mostly he just did his thing and forgot that he was in front of a bunch of people. There may or may not have been some nose picking, booger eating going on that makes me gag. WHY does anyone do that?!?!!??! 

The highlight of the whole evening came after the last song. He thought his teacher had given them permission to give their moms the gift they had made us. Instead of walking around the tubs that held the props he, like any rational, fun loving boy, decided the fastest, most fun way, to me was to jump over the tub. 

Yup. You guessed it. His foot caught the tub, tipped it over, while the teacher was still talking, and he sprawled out on the floor. 

SO funny! AND I caught it all on tape!

He's a cute kid and always keeps us laughing. 

Sanders' picture is at the top right above him.
Oh how we LOVE Mrs. Karen!

In other news, we have decided to have Karaia and Beckahm go competitive in soccer. We found a leauge, DFC (Davis Futbol Club) that will give them the competition they need without sucking the fun out of soccer and there isn't too much travel. Karaia had try outs today and Beckham's are tomorrow.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

One day at a time

I had a few calming thoughts these past few days amongst the stress that I'm starting to believe I don't know how to live without.

The Lord has a time line for me. Whether or not I try and micromanage it or not. I noticed it last week too. What I didn't share is that on my end, things seemed to keep getting in the way of progress, but it was also happening on the production end. The printer threw a hissy fit for two whole days. So even if my part had been able to be completed it would have just sat as a file, waiting for the printer to show up for work again.


Also, I finished all my files done before May even started so I would have time to get yardage out to the helpers (oh my goodness, how I LOVE the helpers!). But today, two days before June, I just barely got the fabric to them.

But I'm ok with that. For some reason, I very much feel like things are happening as they should. Which is weird, but cause technically every last thing is late.

Are deck is taking a bit longer. OH, but it's going to be gorgeous. I'd show you a picture but our hard drive died on our desk top and this lap top doesn't play well with the SD card. But trust. It's a beautiful space.

Still, not stressed about it. We are working on it when we can and when life demands to be lived we break from the deck and know that we will get back to it.

I did post a few pictures of my new line :) I am loving how it inspires me to create with it. I keep having moments where I think, "I love this fabric! ....wait...I made this!" It's surreal to have those experiences and I am so grateful for them.

June is going to be FUN!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

I feel love with you

Today Sanders walked into the living room. I was in the kitchen. He stopped, looked at me, gasped, and then ran and put his little arms around me legs.

Looking up at my face he said, "I feel love with you! I want to marry you!"

"You do? What did I do to earn your love?"

"You snuggle with me."

Tonight he set the table and whispered to me, "I gave you the first fork because you snuggle with me."

Those two little interactions make everything worth it and then some.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

The definition

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

I'm so grateful Tennyson and I had a wonderful day yesterday because today was exactly the reason Heavenly Father gives you good days so you have a little reserve to pull from. Tennyson is still learning to listen to his body and take the appropriate measures when it tells him to. (Yes, I know this is potentially embarrassing for him and I realize my blog is public AND I also print my blog into a book for my children to read. But guess what, this is my real life and it isn't always pretty and quite often things are embarrassing. I have no wish to scar my children, but I do wish to document what our life was really like. The good, the great, the awful, the embarrassing, the wonderful, the silly, the unhappy, the joyful, all of it. I want it all down where we can remember it and grow from it. )

Anyway, off my soap box now.

Tennyson is working on stuff and today seemed to be one of those days he decided not to work so hard on it. Sigh. He will be in first grade in a few months. It's a concern. Mostly because he really is SUCH a great kid. His giggle is amazing and infectious. He is so independent and gets things done when he sets his mind to it. He has an incredible mind for inventions. He is a wonderful friend. Even when we are super frustrated with each other and I don't like the choices he's made and he doesn't like the consequences he's earned, that I'm enforcing, he still will curl in my arms for a hug if I offer it. I try to offer it when I am most mad so I can remember he is still little and we are both still learning.

But nothing seems to be helping the learning in this area. Day after day, multiple times a day. Night has it's own set of things we deal with, but I'm not worried about that. Sometimes a body just needs to grow more to be able to handle the night. But the day? Yeah, that one should be handled. already.

I really have no idea what to do. It doesn't seem to matter what he is or isn't doing at the time his body tells him it is time to move! It's frustrating and I worry it will affect how he thinks about himself. I want him to focus on the good. Are you kidding? I want to focus on the good, but it's tremendously hard when his behaviors require multiple consequences for the SAME behavior during one day.


I've got to change the way I'm doing things. I'm just not sure what. 

Someday, Tennyson. You can do this!!!! Go Mr. T!

To completely change subjects, my dear friend, Jo'ell, had some complications shortly after delivering a baby yesterday. It was pretty scary stuff most of the day today and I asked the kids to include her in all of their prayers. Later in the day the kids asked me how she was doing.

"Well, she was bleeding a lot and they couldn't get it to stop so they had to do surgery to stop it."

Rolling his eyes and shaking his head, Sanders piped up in the background, "No, no, no. They should have just used a band aid!"

Ah kids. I would never trade this job for anything! No matter what.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

T time and a dress

Mr. T doesn't have school for the next few days because of kindergarten testing. Everyone else has a regular schedule which means I get some one on one time with the middle child-sh. It doesn't happen nearly as much as I'd like.

I took him to the gym with me today. They have a little room for the kiddos to play in. It has a big window that the kids can see what we are doing and we can check on them. We were doing back squats today and were supposed to go as heavy as safely possible. The first set I did (we were supposed to do 4 in a set on the back squats because they were supposed to be very heavy, then jump into 12 front squats ahap with the barbell and then 25 squat box jumps. That would complete a set and we had to do 3 sets) I had 65 lbs on my back. But there was this other bar all set up that I could see out of the corner of my eye. It looked heavy. WAY too heavy for me. But I thought for my second set, why not. I'll just try and if I have to bail, I'll bail.

I stepped up to the rack, got under the bar, lifted it off it's rest with my back just below my shoulders, went down into my squat---below parallel---and found myself on my way back to standing. I did it! Then I finished the other 3!!!

When I grabbed Tennyson after I had finished I said, "Guess how much weight I just did a back squat with?!? 115 lbs!!!"

With HUGE eyes he said, " Wow.......was the bar all bendy on the ends? Because in cartoons, when it's really heavy, it's bendy on the ends."

Love that kid.

Then we went shopping for some new flip flops for him. Turns out we hit a good sale and ended up getting a bunch for everyone. He LOVED helping me chose just the right ones for each kid.

It was so much fun to be with him. We have our not so great moments together and it was just so nice to refill our cups with positive interaction.

My mom bought some of my fabric and made herself a dress. She made up the pattern and it is awesome!

 Didn't she do a great job?! She even added pockets! And there is piping all over the place. Such great little details to have.

She ran right over as soon as she was finished. Such a fun memory to have together. She wants me to take more pictures when she has her hair done and make-up on. I will, but I think she looks pretty cute as is.

Thank you, Mom, you did an incredible job!

Monday, May 20, 2013

The breaks

Today I had plans.

Plans to get a lot done on my designs so I can be more present in my life. AND because my feature month starts June 1st! I've got to get this line done.

But right from the get go, someone else had other plans.

I stayed up late last night to get a job start on my usual Monday duties. And by late I mean early. And by early I mean 3:00am.  Which also meant that I did not get up with the kids. However, we have this great chart, or so I thought, and my nagging is no longer necessary.

Turns out the kids completely forgot that the chart is law even if mom is not there to remind them of this little fact.  By the time I was woken up, albeit to kids playing silly with each other, at 8:05am they were FAR from being where they should have been having been up for over an hour. Some of them had still not eaten breakfast. WHAT?!?!?!?!

Sanders slept in until about 8:20. That was wonderful. Although it did put him quite a bit behind and by the time he finished all of his stuff, playgroup had been going for almost 45 mins and he really just wanted to stay home.

So, I let him. I thought, I'll just turn on a show and I know I've lost 45 mins of design time, but spending that time with Sanders was important and he will be perfectly happy to sit and watch his show.

And that's true, he did. But then PYP stuff went up in smoke and I ran around putting fires out during the time he was absorbed in his stuff.

Soon it was time for Tennyson to come home. Wonderful! I thought I'll feed them lunch and then Sanders can finish his show with Tennyson and then they can play together while I get some design stuff done.

However, Tennyson's homework today, while usually something he can do on his own, felt extra challenging to him today and he needed his mom. Which I was happy to do. THEN the garage door man came because our garage wouldn't shut this morning. Although when he asked what was the problem and I told him and then pushed the button it went down just fine. Of course! Still, the garage door was hanging crooked so he fixed it for us. The best news is the whole thing only cost $80! Best news of the day!

Meanwhile, Sanders and Tennyson were having battle of the siblings, while Tennyson was still trying to finish homework and then get to eating his lunch.

After all of that, I had time for one file before PYP stuff needed attention again. Then more moments with the boys. They were good, they were just unplanned. Which is great, but it means less time for the things I thought I was supposed to be doing today.

By the time that was all over, Karaia and Beckham came home. We talked school stuff and Beckham talked about being nervous for his baseball game tonight. They were playing the most challenging team in the league.

My friend Nicki's computer was throwing a fit and she asked if she could come use mine for a bit. I LOVE that! So nice to have friends that feel comfortable in your home. It was nice to chat with her for a while.

While all of this was going on, I learned that the printer at Modern Yardage was also throwing a fit today and not a whole lot of anything was happening down there either.

That's when I paused.

What was I supposed to be learning/doing today instead of what I had planned? Clearly, the Lord was throwing every possible road block in my path to get me to stop or slow down. Or was this a trial to see how I would chose to take the day or because really good things will happen when this get done and someone doesn't like when good things happen? Either way, someone was trying to put on the breaks and slow things down. It felt a lot more like gentle reminders than thwarting.

Thankfully, I felt stressed, but calm most of the day. If that makes any sense? I knew I had stuff that needed to get done, but even if my end was done the warehouse wouldn't have been able to do anything with it today anyway. So there was no point in really stressing over it. I just did my best.

Beckham lost his baseball game. He even struck out twice and was the last out twice. He was doing a pretty good job handling it. I wasn't able to go and he said,

 "I'm glad you didn't come. The PAIN! The HORROR! I'm glad you didn't see that."

I made sure he knew I can't possibly love him less because he strikes out...ever.

On the way home Kevin and Beckham saw a rainbow that looked like it ended right at the top of our street. Kevin said, "Look! That rainbow ends at the top of the road. Let's go find the pot of gold."

"Ok! Yes, let's go find the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow!!!"

"There isn't really a pot of gold at the end."

"Way to crush my dreams, Dad."

That kid is so funny!

Here it is almost 10pm and I have still only completed about 6 out of 50 files that need to be done. I feel, though, that everything is happening in the time frame it needs to. I have faith that while I don't think there is enough time to get things done Someone else can see more of the picture than me.

So I will pay heed to the breaks and enjoy the slower pace

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Miracle at the turtle

Our regional stake center is often called the Turtle. So named because it is built as a circle with a few rectangles coming off of it.

We had regional stake conference today. Basically, it's a two hour long sacrament meeting without taking the sacrament. For the last 10 years our (read Kevin and Emilie) goal has been to see how long we can wrestle the children while pretending to hear even one word of the speakers.

Well, today, my friends, I heard them all. Every word. All two hours worth.

I was in shock!

This, this is why we are doing adding to our family. It is so wonderful to be able to go to church for the intended purpose as opposed to teaching the children the appropriate behavior during such meetings.


I really do have wonderful kids. They are so smart, funny, and mostly well behaved. Some more than others ;)

Tonight Tennyson asked Kevin, "Is glad more than happy or is happy more than glad?"

Pretty deep thought for a 5 year old.

For the record, I think happy is more than glad, but Google says there is no difference in intensity.

My current phrase to tell the children when they start whining/arguing with me is, "Ooooooh, I hear you. You want me to wrestle you by your eyebrows. "

It catches them off guard and it's easier to get them back on track without too much contention.

I will be using this one until it's last leg.

Anything to keep the whining at bay. 

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Mind blogging

I go through out me day cataloging memories as if I were blogging. They are always very well writen and witty. Then I sit down and barely non-boring comes out. Sigh.

I went visiting teaching today. That has never felt like a chore to me. I always really look forward to it.

Still working on finishing up the design files.

Made my kids laugh because I jokingly told Beckham I was going to wrestle him by his eyebrows when he was dragging his feet to do something that was asked of him.

I told the to remember I am hilarious.

All. the. time.

They thought that was hilarious.

Went to Young Women's. Man, I love those girls! Can't wait for girls camp!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Home stretch

Stretch is an understatement around here.

We are stretched to our limit and are so looking forward to summer.

We've been enjoying the last few soccer games, and performances. We are also getting the last little bit done on the deck before we can start installing Trex!

I'm busy finalizing my new fabric line and feel the deadline breathing down my back.

The weather has been beautiful and I can't wait to get this line put to bed and enjoy it.

So close! 

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Motherhood musings

I was all over the map today with my emotions.

Mother's Day brings the expectation that because our children love us they will be on their best behaviors and exhibit every good thing we have strived and prayed to teach them.

And then, because they love us, they feel safe to show us the parts of themselves that aren't pleasant or pretty because they know, because we have taught them, that no matter what, they will always be loved by us.

And that is a truth that is our eternal motherhood quest to maintain. That they are good even when they make choices contrary to what we have taught. That they are children of God and are therefor so full of light that they have to work hard to dim it. We, their mothers, always see that light and feel frustrated that they sometimes chose to ignore it's potential, it's power. That's  where the impatience can come in.

I bounced back and forth between feeling so disappointed and hurt, because it was my day (yes, a selfish way of thinking---working on it), over children's choices and feeling so grateful and loved that they trusted me enough to show me their challenging sides.

The talks in church were incredible and I found myself reflecting on what I want my children to remember about me as their mother. What my Heavenly Father wants me to teach them. I felt so much gratitude for the women in my ward. Such incredible examples of imperfect women being perfect in motherhood because they continue to try. They continue to seek the Lord's guidance. I feel very blessed to be surrounded by such women.

The rest of the day turned out wonderfully. The kids played nicely, I got a great nap in, Kevin and the kids gave me a new crock pot I'd been wanting, the cards the kids made were hilarious and thoughtful, Kevin was wonderful in making me feel loved, and I got to see my mom and thank her for all she does for us.

I hope today reminded you that motherhood is not a perfect process, but it is a means of reaching perfection.

Happy Mother's Day.

Thursday, May 9, 2013


 Sanders had to get shots today at his well check up. I told him we were going to go get ice cream because he'd been so brave.

"I wasn't brave. I cried."

"But you didn't wiggle or try and stop the nurse from giving you your shots. You can cry and still be brave. You still let them give them to you.  That is very brave!"

These faces kill me! 

He LOVES stickers. More specifically he loves stickers on his face.  Particularly stickers you find on fruit. This is a very typical, daily, look for Sanders :)

Look at how long Karaia's Hair is! She is a doll.

My sweet Tennyson. We have either really amazing days or days where, to coin a phrase I heard my cousin use, we learn a LOT from each other. 

Isn't that the best way you've ever heard to say that?

I wish I had a picture of Beckham today. He was running around so much we barely saw each other.

The older two didn't actually get home from school until after 8:00 pm. They came home just before 4pm. Long enough to grab a quick snack and change into soccer stuff, then they were off to activity days (Karaia) or soccer (Beckham).

I picked Karaia up from Activity days to drive her to her soccer game on our way to Tennyson's soccer game. When her game ended after 7pm, she had piano starting at 7:30pm. Kevin picked her up after her lesson and took her grocery shopping with him. They got home just before 9pm.

Meanwhile, after Beckham's soccer game he had just enough time to shove a hot dog in his face and then change for scouts. They went hiking. Poor little guys legs were killing him by the time he got home around 8:15.

This was all after Karaia and Beckham got to go to the Rec Center and swim for a few hours for a field trip!

We are so ready for the non-schedule of summer!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Impulsive memory loss

  Thank you everyone who commented  on yesterday's  post.  Thank you for lending me your strength to lean on until I found my own again.   Today was a billion time better.   So thank you! 

Recently, there have been a few situations where very reliable adults have shared things Tennyson has done. Things that aren't huge deals, but need to be attended to so he can learn from them.
Each time, when I question Tennyson about the events he is honestly, truly shocked and confused by what I am telling him he did.
He really doesn't remember.
I talked with his kindergarten teacher and it seems to get that sometimes he is just so impulsive that he neither thinks about it before hand and afterwards it's like it never happened.
Sadly, some of his behavior comes across as a kid who just doesn't care. And it makes me sad to think of people thinking that about him...not to say he doesn't have some of that in him, but maybe not as much as was thought.
He doesn't have problems concentrating. He is self disciplined with homework and always gets it done right when he gets home with out any reminders from me. But when he gets a thought in his head it is really hard to detail him and have him change course.
I'm still trying to figure out if this is a medical, personality, or stage thing.
Fingers crossed for it being a stage.
On a side note, no wonder trying to alter unwanted behaviors hasn't been working. He doesn't remember doing most of them.
I don't know whether to laugh or cry about that...
He better grow up to be the amazing person I see inside! We are more than making our payments now.

Motherhood meltdown

We were off all day. The kids were running on a far slower time table than me. Some times I handle this well and change my approach to enable them to hear me more clearly.

Today was not one of those days.

As a result I felt very ignored and disrespected. I shut down and stopped trying.

Exactly what every good mom should do. Please read that with a heavy side dish of sarcasm.

Days like these are compounded by the fact that I know what I should have done but willing chose to be prideful and selfish. You really have to check those two things at the door if you ever want to get decent results with kids. Last time I checked I was the adult. It's up to me to be the example.

Somedays that is a very weighty challenge. One in which I very often fall short of what I've been told is the ideal.

Yes, I have a passion that does not involve my children. I am constantly be reminded that this should not be happening while I still have children at home or this is a clear indicator that I must not really know how important being a mom is. That I am failing.  I feel it.  I internally fight against that rhetoric. I know I am where I am supposed to be. Still...I feel it.

For the record, I understand all too keenly the great privilege and responsibility I have of being a mother. Hence the feelings of supreeme inadequacy. Hence the fight against letting what people tell me is my truth seep into my heart and  keeping what my Heavenly Father has told me is my truth in clear sight.

We are not perfect. At anything really. Other than we are REALLY good at saying," I'm sorry "and "I know I'm not perfect, but I'm trying."

We are a home full of rambunctious, loud, full of life and joy children who also know how to be disrespectful and mischievous. Not because we as parents have allowed that, or have lost control, or have no clue what we are doing, but because they are their own people and have their own minds. All the unwanted behavior they exhibit is seen by us and we also pray on a daily basis that it will not happen. It doesn't mean that it is eliminated. It means we are not perfect.  It means we are constantly trying.

To top this all off I ate half a bag of potato chips even though I fought my way through eating healthy all day!

What is the deal? ! ? Just do what I know I'm supposed to already.

Sunday, May 5, 2013


We have the beginnings of our new deck!

I have to preemt this post with a big HUGE thank you to everyone who came to help!! There is no way we could have done this alone. Thank you so much!

As always let's get a reminder of how things started looking in the morning. This was after we checked off two soccer games on our list of things to do, but right before we forgot all about Tennyson's soccer practice, but DID remember to attend a baby shower. 


 We felt very blessed to have so many wonderful people answer our call for help. We are so, so, SO grateful for all of the time, energy, and strength they spent on Saturday. We are also so grateful for their wives for loaning them to us for many hours.

Left to right: My Dad, Quinn, Dave, Alex, Sanders, Nate

 While I went to a fun baby shower, the boys got to work taking the brick off of the house and installing the 4 x4 posts.

 I came back just in time to BBQ some hamburgers and hot dogs for lunch.

 Sanders was part of the construction crew for most of the day. The other kids were scattered all over playing at friend's homes. THANK YOU FRIENDS!

 And when I say part of the construction crew I really mean it. That kid knows how to use a crow bar and became a professional at taking nails out. It doesn't matter how small you are if you use leverage!

 Look how much further the new deck is from the old!

 The new ledger was installed where we removed the brick. It will be secured right into the structure of the house.

 I had to document that I was there and part of the crew. Albeit the only one of the crew with sparkly sunglasses and a big sun hat! I'll tell you what though, my sawing skills are coming right along :)

 And my nail gun skills. 

Kevin and Nate slipping the post sleeve on.

 The old joists were so warped.

 Megan and Colton popped by to help in the middle of their house hunting day. They are wonderful workers and it was so nice to have them! Alex and Megan quickly crafted an excellent way to put the brackets on the ends of the board so they would be flush with the edge.

 When the new header went in you could really get a sense of just how much bigger the new deck is going to be!

 This is where construction slowed a bit. We had to scab onto the old joist. Not only does it require muscle you also have to use math to make sure both sides line up perfectly and everything is level. Thank goodness we have lots of engineers and math enthusiasts in our family ;)

Leave it up to Nate to photo bomb a perfectly innocent picture.

Megan and Colton

 Most of the day the yard looked like this.

 Beckham loves power tools, who doesn't really? He was thrilled when Dave let him test his skills with the nail gun. Sanders asked if nail guns kill people.


Here's the before again.

And the after!



We almost finished everything we hoped to accomplish today. We were hoping to get the little bridge over the basement door all framed as well as the landing for the stairs. But we are still very, very happy with what we did check off. 
 Look how warped the old joist are!

 We were shocked that we even got this one as straight as this. We got all the old joists scabbed on one side. We still need to do the other side.

We are so pleased with the 6"x6" trex post sleeves. The fit right over 4 x4 posts. It makes everything feel more stately and substantial. Totally worth the cost. 

We were originally going to add post skirts to the end of the posts, but they didn't come on the truck. Turns out that was a good thing because they would have gone past the footing edge and looked like they were floating. We are very happy with how they look with out the skirts!

You can see where the old deck ended. Right about where that sprinkler in the flower bed is. 

 Dave put some loose planks on the joist to ease in helping with construction from the top. The old deck ends abut 5 -6 inches past that furthest plank.

 This is a good view of where the old deck stops to the North. There is a bigger gap right after the last old joist because the dryer vent comes out right there and we need to get an elbow extension and then custom cut the joist around that. 

Looking to the North from the South East corner of the deck.

 Looking to the South from the sliding door because I am not a monkey and I didn't want to test my balance on the joists with out the loose plank on them.

We would not have gotten even 1/4 of this done if Kevin and I had tried to do this ourselves. We are so grateful for everyone who helped and especially Dave who has been such a source of guidance, knowledge and skill during this whole process. 

Thank you!!! 

OH! I forgot to mention that we found a place that will install a railing for us for the same price it would have been to purchase just the materials from Lowe's! I'm sure by the time we get the deck built we are going to very ready to sit back a watch someone finish it off. Hooray!