Friday, May 30, 2008

Kids make you humble

First day of summer vacation and being the "mean" mom I am, I had the boys at the table doing their homework pages for the day. Tom starts in on his math and asks me what congruent meant. This is something that I should know. I have a degree in Technical Writing. That term sounds technical. I passed college algebra with flying colors and even enjoyed taking it. It sounds like a math term. I strain. I search. I ponder. NOTHING. Finally, I resort to calling my source of all things I don't know - Gary. Much to my surprise, he doesn't know either and suggests, of all things, a dictionary. Do we even use dictionaries anymore now that we have the Internet?

For all of you now wondering what congruent means, I looked it up online and discovered it is two things that are exactly the same size and shape. Like two CD cases. If you can put one cut out on top of the other and it fits perfectly, they are congruent. It's a sad day when two college degrees have to get online to help with some second grade math!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Let it Begin

It's here. Summer Vacation. It doesn't feel like it's summer yet outside. It's about 60 degrees and windy still today. The kids all wore jackets and long pants to school this week and I just turned the heat off in the house a couple of days ago. Regardless, the calendar says it should be time for school to be out for the summer.

I'm actually kind of excited for summer break this year. It seems like we have been running from one thing to another and there is never a moment to just sit back and be kids. Now they will have days filled with things like baseball, swimming lessons, lunch at the park and just playing outside with friends.

I'm also hopeful that a new chore chart system I started today will help to keep some order and encourage them to get their work done. We'll see how it goes.

We are all ready for summer to start, now if the weather will just cooperate, we'll be in business.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Memorial Day Weekend

We had so much fun over the Memorial Day weekend. We left Friday for Ontario, Oregon to visit with my family. Dad was great. He had the four-wheelers ready to go for the boys as soon as they woke up on Saturday morning. OK, maybe not as soon as they woke up since I told them to go back to bed at 5:30 a.m. when they were already upstairs watching cartoons that "Grandpa said we could!" You have to love the excitement of kids. Going to the farm is like Christmas to them. Four-wheelers, cousins, Grandpa Larson, tractors, acres and acres to be explored. You get the idea.

They spent every moment outside on Saturday it seemed like. That night we had a BBQ at Oliver and Ashley's house and the kids played some more. Tom and Logan got their first taste of riding dirt bikes when they got on a Honda 50. They both did awesome! I was surprised at how easily it seemed to come to them. Tom was first and tipped it over once in some soft dirt but just picked the bike back up and continued on.

Logan went second and tipped it over in the same spot and, just like his brother, picked it up and continued. The difference between Tom and Logan was Tom waited to hear all of the instructions before taking off. Logan didn't. He knew how to go and go fast but not really anything else. It came back to get him when he was ba-ha-ing off through the brush and then practically jumping piles of grass clippings - none of which was intentional - and then he hit and hit hard. Thank goodness for helmets! It was one of those crashes that you immediately think about how long it will take you to get to the emergency room and who will take care of the other three kids and how will he play baseball with broken bones get the picture.

Much howling and wailing later, we realized nothing was broken and he only had a bit of a scratch on one leg and a slight bruise from the helmet on his forehead. He was done riding though. We tried to get him back on so he wouldn't be scared to do it later, but nothing doing. He preferred four-wheelers.

Ethan cracked me up all weekend. Saturday morning he inspected all the tractors he could find - I bet there were six or seven. For some reason, he liked the sprayer the best. I don't know if it was because it was much higher off the ground, or if it was the long arms that were folded in while it was parked, but that was "his" tractor. After a four-wheeler ride with Gary, he came back to see that someone had taken "his" tractor. Trying to get his mind off of the missing tractor, he went with Loney in another tractor to do some disking. It was all fine and dandy until he came back and saw that "his" tractor was still missing. So, being the wonder-mom I am, we went off in search of the sprayer and Oliver. Dad's farm is over 9,000 acres and I don't spend a lot of time there so when Oliver said he would be at the end of the farm, I just got in the car and went looking. Two phone calls for directions and one VERY VERY VERY LARGE mud puddle later, we found him. (I'll post more about the mud puddle another day.)

As soon as Ethan got in the sprayer, he let Oliver have it.

"You better not take my tractor again! This is my tractor!"

Oliver and I were both laughing pretty good.

Dylan spent the weekend either sleeping or standing up it seemed like. He wasn't really confident in standing without holding onto something before we went to Oregon but he seemed to stand longer and longer each day we were there. He'll be walking before we know it.

Sunday we hung out with Dad and enjoyed the beautiful weather in the morning. That night we went over to Loney and Rachelle's house and the kids played some more. Stetson even showed us how great he is walking using his walker. Keep it up Stets! The more you use your walker and crutches, the less you'll need that wheelchair!

The drive home was extra long with several stops and one extra passenger. We brought one of Dad's lab puppies home to Sunnie and Brandon's nephew. Since we didn't have a kennel and he was a bit larger than lap-size, it was quite the adventure. Tom and the puppy had a great time bonding in the back. He only chewed through one set of headphones and one cardboard box lid before he fell asleep!

Now we are all back into the groove at home and trying to recover from a fun road trip. I'm just glad it's the last week of school and we can start relaxing a bit more around here!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Playlists anyone?

Okay, so some of you have music on your blogs. I WANT MUSIC TOO! Can I copy you playlists and how do I go about adding music?

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Dylan's teeth and Tom's field trip

Dylan was so fussy yesterday that I finally put my finger in his mouth to see if anything was going on and guess what?!? He finally broke through his top tooth. That makes a grand total of three teeth for my little man with one more on the way soon. He seems like it is so much later than the other boys but with my memory, who knows. That is one of the reasons I really enjoy blogging lately. It's faster than writing down the little things they do and I will have a record of it later. I'm hopeful that I will print it out in book form come December.

Anyway! Tom is at school right now with his pack of hot dogs for their second grade walking field trip to a nearby park. They are suppose to BBQ and have games and all sorts of fun. The downer is this. It is about 60 degrees and raining but I guess they can't have it any other day. I am excited to find out just what they did today when he gets home and I hope he isn't freezing standing out in the rain in his sweatshirt all day. Will summer EVER get here?

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Logan's Big Day

So, it's official. Logan graduated from Kindergarten! He was so cute sitting up there singing his heart out for the program. They sang about six or seven songs, complete with shimmies and shakes at the appropriate time. One of the songs ended with the kids blowing a kiss to the crowd. Logan warned me several days earlier that he would definitely NOT be participating in this part of the song. Sure enough, he held out and NO kiss left his mouth for the program. He is WAY WAY too cool for that.

Grandma Larson came up from Utah for the program and Gary took the morning off of work so he felt pretty cool I think. After the program we wanted to take him home but he was SOOOO sad we weren't letting him ride the bus. I use to hate riding the bus! I had to promise him that I wouldn't pick him up the rest of the year for him to ride home with us. He got to pick where we went for lunch and picked Burger King. The only problem was it was 10:30 a.m. Gary drove around for a while and at about 10:50 we finally parked and went in. We had to wait ten minutes for them to start serving lunch, not breakfast, but it was worth it to make his day a bit more special. I never thought I would be eating lunch at 11:00 and thinking that it was perfectly normal!

He asked me the other day about first grade and as the conversation progressed, I realized he thought first grade would start tomorrow. I had to tell him he still had about a week left of Kindergarten even after graduation. I think he's on board with that now but it took some convincing. He thought I just didn't understand what he was asking or that I didn't know how his school worked. The kid makes me laugh.

I can't believe two of my boys will be in school all day next year and that Tom will be in THIRD grade. It doesn't seem like Logan should be old enough for first grade yet. I called on preschool for Ethan next year too. Three in school. WOW! Hard to believe. I'm really proud of all Logan accomplished this year in Kindergarten. He really gave his best effort and mastered everything that came his way. I think I'll try to teach him to read more fluently this summer. The kid can do ANYTHING that he sets his mind to. I sure do love him!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Do Little Boys Get PMS?

I'm pretty sure boys can get p.m.s. How do I know?

1. Ethan has been crying, or should I say HOWLING, at any and everything. He will cry if I ask him to go potty because, "I don't like to___________" (fill in the blank with whatever I have suggested from potty to eating to napping to.....) He'll cry if I can't stop changing Dylan's poopy diaper to read him a book at that very instant. He'll cry if Logan looks at him or talks to him or makes a sound or wants a turn playing the wii or...... Honestly. I think his week of p.m.s. better be about over!

2. Dylan has also been crying and screeching. If I ask him to not throw his food on the floor he will throw - and I mean throw - his hands in the air in disgust and then screech baby obscenities at me from the top of his lungs. This happens in some form whenever he is not allowed to do something. Call me crazy but playing in the toilet, pulling all the clothes out of the drawers, pulling plugs out of outlets, banging blocks on the piano, etc., etc., are NOT okay in this house! His week of p.m.s. also better be about over. Since they share a room and spend so much time together, I figure they are on the same cycle by now. :)

3. Logan is also experiencing symptoms. When I told him this morning at breakfast that tomorrow he would need to wear a shirt with buttons and not some old t-shirt to his Kindergarten registration, you would have thought I asked him to dress in a pink tu-tu and heels. When I added that since it would be colder tomorrow, he would need to wear levis without those hard earned holes in the knees, I may as well have added make-up to the list. AHHHH Mom! Do I have to?

4. Tom has started into the pre-teen phase already and has his moody and non-moody days. Mostly the moody days are any day I ask him to do things or the days he must spend with his siblings. Non-moody are those he can run free through the neighborhood with his band of buddies doing whatever they want where ever they want.

P.M.S.? I think so!

Actually, in the big picture they are all pretty good. I was watching Tom at soccer practice last night thinking, "He is SOOOOO cute out there!" and I catch myself saying the same thing about Logan, Ethan, and Dylan daily. I don't know how we got so lucky to have the most handsome boys ever but I think we did. Maybe it's not the boys that are Maybe it's me!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Random Thoughts

So there I was, sorting the laundry again, when what do I find half way down in Tom and Logan's basket? Two - yes that is TWO - shirts complete with hangar and one pair of socks still folded neatly together. So, my questions are these: How did I not see the top of the hangar sticking up by their necks as they walked out the door to school and when did they get so good at folding socks together after they have worn them?!?! I'm SURE they didn't put clean clothes in the laundry for me to wash because we've had more than a few conversations about this ending with their solemn promise to NEVER and I mean NEVER put clean clothes in there!

In retaliation for the clean clothes I found, I decided to give each of them three good size chores to make up for the three pieces of clothing. Logan's first job is to wipe down both bathrooms for me. The kid is amazing at bathrooms when he wants to be. I give him a can of Lysol wipes and he goes to town. After about 15 minutes, I decided to check on him and found that not only had he wiped everything down in his bathroom, but he decided to use hand towels and washcloths to cover every inch of flat surfaces like the sink counter and the top of the toilet tank. I know he means well and it did bring a smile to my face.

Different random subject. Logan has taken to listening to music lately and will sit in the car to listen if I leave it running for some reason. Tim McGraw happens to be our favorite artist lately and we both sing along loudly. Today at the dreaded Wal-Mart I decided we should increase our Tim McGraw library which consisted of one CD so we bought the greatest hits collection. AWESOME two-disk set and so far it rocks. We actually went the very long way home today so we could listen to a few more songs with Ethan telling us to turn it down because he wanted to sleep. The boys make me laugh.

Dylan is loving life outside these days. He wants to be down on the grass but lately doesn't want his knees to touch so he walks along on his hands and feet. It is funny to watch. He actually stood by himself for about one minute today without me holding his hands. Once is confidence builds, he'll be running around I'm sure.

Tom is almost done with second grade and I can't believe he is that old. He has the funniest grin lately with one of his top teeth still gone and the other one coming in slowly. He's turning into quite the little athlete with soccer and baseball almost every night. For Cub Scouts he needed to make a collection of something and Gary and Tom decided to collect rocks from streams around Pocatello. The last two Sundays we have gone for a ride to get rocks from ten different streams. Watching Gary and Tom walk off to the stream together makes me realize just how big he is getting. Somehow they managed to get ten rocks without falling in once which is a miracle because they wouldn't accept rocks from the stream bank, it had to be in the stream. Boys.

Saturday, May 17, 2008


Ethan came in from the backyard crying hysterically this morning. They had been helping Gary put in the sprinkler system for the garden and he was hot and tired but I could tell it was something more than that. After I got him calmed down a bit so I could understand him, this was our conversation:

Me: What's wrong?
Ethan: My wormy is gone FOREVAH!
Me: What wormy?
Ethan: I found a wormy in the hole and then I pulled it apart into two pieces and then it fell into the hole again and now it is gone forevah.
Me: (trying not to laugh that he included the pulling it in two part) We'll look for it when we get home from soccer okay?
Ethan: Okay. Then you can use glue and put it back togethah.
Me: (laughing) Okay.

Another day, another drama.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Ethan's birthday party

For Ethan's birthday, we had an exhausting drive around town. First stop, the playground on the other side of Pocatello. We never go there so it was fun to play on new toys. Next up was a trip to McDonalds. Finally, we ended up back at home to open presents and have cake. Buckling and unbuckling and buckling and unbuckling and chasing five boys around was quite the work out for Gary and me! Ethan wanted Brody's big sister to come to his party too since she is his favorite babysitter. I didn't think the park would be as much fun for an almost 11 year old girl so she ended up babysitting on his birthday after the party which made him very happy and gave me a chance to go to Gary's softball game where I froze while the snow, sleet, rain, and wind raised their ugly heads! All in all it was a pretty good birthday for him though!

Ethan's birthday cake. He wanted a train cake again this year.

Ethan, Brody Burch - his neighborhood friend we invited to come with us, Logan, and Tom at the playground we went to for his birthday. Dylan fell asleep in the car on the way there so he didn't even see the playground!

Me and my little man on his birthday! Boy I love this little guy.

Blowing out his candles. It took several tries for his aim to work. He had the blowing part down, just not where the air should be directed.

Ethan and his big brother Tom.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

The Gator

A few years ago my dad bought the boys a John Deere Gator as a "tractor" for his "city grandsons." We just had Tom and Logan I think, maybe Ethan was just born. Well, fast forward three years and it is more than time to replace the tires. They have used the tractor to deliver things around the neighborhood, pick up each other from the bus stop, haul all the stuff they need from house to house, and anything else you can think of. They even use it to clean up after the dogs in the back yard by driving the bucket around so they can scoop up the poop into it.

One of my favorite memories of the tractor happened shortly after we brought it home. We were going down the street for dinner and Tom and Logan were riding in the tractor. Ethan was in the car seat and Gary put him in the bed and let his brothers drive him to the neighbors. That is an all-purpose tractor!

Gary and I have talked often lately about how to replace the tires and if that is even an option. Today I finally dug out the owners manual from the filing cabinet so I can call their customer service number. I wonder how many calls they get because the tires have holes that let the rocks in.

I have to say, it has been one of the best gifts they have ever had. They all use it and this summer it will be time to teach Ethan how to drive. Watch out if you see him in the driver's seat!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


So, one way I know it is suppose to be spring is my vacuum. Each spring for the past three years, whatever vacuum I have gets spring fever and decides it would rather spend time outside even if it is at the landfill. UGGHHH!

Today I got ready to vacuum and I know it has been picking up less and less lately but thought I was feeling lucky and plugged it in. I knew I was in trouble when it could suck up small pieces of Styrofoam packing peanuts that the kids had broken into pieces the other day. When I found myself bending over to pick up a string and then "loosen" it from the carpet and give the vacuum another try, it was over.

Once again I am in the market for a vacuum and this time I am leaning toward a more expensive, and thereby more durable right?, model like a Dyson. Don't really want to spend $450 plus though so I found a bronze model for just under $370. Here's the link:

I know, it's refurbished but really, $450 plus for a vacuum?

So, my questions to all of you are these:

1. Do you have a good reliable vacuum that can withstand two dogs and five men folk and a sand box?

2. Are Dyson vacuums really worth it?

3. Do you think I'll be replacing it again next spring and kicking myself that I spent so much?

Answer quick because I need to vacuum today or tomorrow - unless of course I order it online because I got a screaming deal and it won't be here for a while. In that case, don't look too closely at our floors!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

the Wii

Tom and Logan have been saving every cent they get -minus tithing of course - for a Wii and are about $35 away from reaching their $250. Ethan just had his birthday and received some birthday money from some of our relatives and it was then that it hit me. Ethan should contribute too or Tom and Logan will NEVER let him touch it! So, today it the big day. I am hoping there will still be one in town by the time school is out. I called around this morning and there were three around so hopefully.....fingers crossed.

I have to admit, I am just as excited as they are about finally getting one. I love to play games! I went out this morning to get the accessories and a couple of games for it and couldn't resist picking up Guitar Hero. So, Ray Ray, I am challenging you to a play off the next time you are in town! Hopefully that will give me enough time to get the songs down on this version.

So, if you don't see us for a couple of weeks, we are breaking in the video games and we'll be back outside soon. It will probably be snowing still for a couple more weeks anyway!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Who knew concrete and PVC pipe could be romantic?

Yesterday was Mother's Day and it was probably the best I've ever had. Gary was asked to speak in church a couple of weeks ago and he was so sweet. His talk was great. I'll include a copy at the end. The boys decided to serve breakfast in bed and they brought it in on a tray for me to enjoy. We spent the day relaxing which doesn't happen very often these days.

Ever since I started planting flowers in our front flower bed I've been coveting the concrete edging around other people's yards so this year I told Gary that is what I wanted for Mother's Day. He scheduled it and in the next couple of weeks it will be here. I can't wait! I never would have dreamed that concrete would make me as happy as it does.

He also designed and bought the supplies for a sprinkler system for our garden so I wouldn't have to drag the hose around and try to remember to water the garden all summer. A truck full of PVC pipe, valves, drip hose, and other sprinkler stuff also made my day. I love having the garden but I have a hard time getting around to watering it as often as it needs to be during the summer while I'm chasing the boys. Hopefully, with a more consistent watering schedule, we will have a bumper crop this year and the pressure cooker and water bath canner will be working over time.

I sure do love my boys and all they do for me. It's fun being the "princess" of the family most of the time and they are really sweet to me.

Here is Gary's talk:

I appreciate the primary, especially the CTR 6 class. Brother Cole and I team teach that class. They are a great group of children! I have learned a lot about the families of my class through the comments from the kids. It is a tribute to the families and mothers in the ward that these children are so well behaved and so well taught. I have had the opportunity to take restless children to their parents over the last three years. One child in particular was back in my class in less than 30 minutes with his mother; a changed young man. Mothers really have such a tremendous influence on their children. From a talk in the December, 2007 Ensign, President Hinckley quoted from E.T. Sullivan: “When Gods wants a great work done in the world or a great wrong righted, he goes about it in a very unusual way. He doesn’t stir up his earthquakes or send forth his thunderbolts. Instead, he has a helpless baby born, perhaps in a simple home and of some obscure mother. And then God puts the idea into the mother’s heart, and she puts it into the baby’s mind. And then God waits. The greatest forces in the world are not the earthquakes and thunderbolts. The greatest forces in the world are babies.” And then President Hinckley summarizes thusly: “And those babies…will become forces for good or ill, depending in large measure on how they are reared.” How true it is that the thoughts and actions of a mother will be felt for generations! John Steele was a private in Company D of the Mormon Battalion. His wife, Catherine Campbell Steele, was one of about 50 women that traveled with the Battalion, supporting their priesthood.In Santa Fe, New Mexico, Private Steele was assigned to the Sick Detachment. There were 87 men and 20 women in the detachment that headed for the New Zion via Pueblo, Colorado and then further north. Private Steele, his wife and young daughter Mary, they had buried two other children back in Nauvoo, came into the Salt Lake valley on July 27th, 1847. On August 9th, 13 days later, on what is now Temple Square, Catherine Steel gave birth to Young Elizabeth Steele; the first white child born in the Salt Lake Valley. John and Catherine had heeded the call of the prophet to join the Mormon Battalion, they had followed and sustained that prophet through the loss of two children and all along a march through the desert wilderness, and then they named their fourth child after that prophet of God.Young Elizabeth Steele married James Stapley and they named their fourth child Mahonri Moriancumer Stapley. This family was deeply affected by the prophets of the Lord and wanted their children to remember from where they came and the priesthood authority by which all things come to pass. The Stapley family moved into what is now southern Utah. That was a harsh environment in the late 1800’s. Mahonri eventually married and had a daughter named Dail Stapley. Dail was my paternal grandmother. She grew up in central Utah. She raised a family of six children on the tail end of the great depression. She passed away when I was 9. In my grandfathers journal he wrote about this about his wife Dail: “I love my wife dearly. She has been a good mother, a good homemaker, a good wife, a good companion, and so very patient with me. She has been the best thing that has ever happened to me.” Two years later my grandfather passed away.My mother was a school teacher until I was born. She quit that job and took on the occupation of mother and wife. She did that for six children. About the time my baby sister started school, dad lost his job, and mom went back to work. I know that she had planned on going back to work eventually, but this was a little quicker, and more needed than her plan had envisioned. My mom had 5 boys and a girl. She had 5 eagle scouts and sent all five sons, plus two extras that lived with us for several years each, on missions. My mother retired from teaching last summer and she and my father are four months into a mission themselves in Atlanta, Georgia.My dear wife Aironn served a mission to Denmark a few years ago. She has given birth to four terrific sons. She also earned a college degree and was working to support us until Tom was born. My son’s mother camps, fishes, bowls, has her own baseball mitt and batting glove. She cooks and eats wild game. She is the center of our family. When Aironn asks for a priesthood blessing, she requests that I give her those blessing when her sons can be there to witness the priesthood in action. She tutors and mentors all five of her boys. She is an example of service, determination, focus and love. Aironn is already laying out a plan to help her future daughter in laws feel appreciated and welcome into our family. My uncle Ross and Aunt Betty Rae had seven girls, no sons. What a tremendous influence on the priesthood this couple had by preparing their daughters for temple marriage. They set a high standard for their daughters to reach. Their daughters are serving missions and marrying in the temple. Their grandchildren are receiving the priesthood. The influence of mothers is not limited to their children only.These women, these mothers of mine, are not extraordinary humans. They are daughters of God. They are strong. They are like so many others in this room. They all have testimonies of God, they all have families they care for and love. In Doctrine and Covenants 93:40 the Lord has declared: “I have commanded you to bring up your children in light and truth.” That is why I am here today, because my mothers taught their children in light and truth. An apt description of the influence of mothers on the faith and priesthood of their sons is found in Alma. In describing the rearing of the 2000 Stripling Warriors, Helaman writes: (Alma 56:47) “Now they had never fought, yet they did not fear death, and they did think more upon the liberty of their father than they did upon their lives; yea they had been taught by their mothers, that if they did not doubt, God would deliver them.” What a wonderful observation by a military leader of the influence of mothers. Truly we know that the greatest work we will accomplish will be within the walls of our own homes.As I look back on my rearing, I see where my mother influenced me and the priesthood that I now hold. She was a strong woman. She cared for and nurtured me. She taught me to cook and clean, to grocery shop, to work hard, to study and to pray. All through my childhood my mother prepared me to leave her side. She prepared me for the mission field. She prepared me to go away to college, she prepared me to find my wife, and she prepared me to raise my own family. And now that her family is raised and out of the house, she is continuing to set the example to her children and grand children by serving the Lord in the mission field. That is the strength of motherhood. They are not superhuman, although at times I believe that my mother had eyes in the back of her head, but they are dedicated to the Lord and their families. Mothers are influencing the priesthood every day in every corner of the world where worthy young men are found. They are teaching our young priesthood holders in primary, Sunday school, and scouting. They are loving their children at home. My wife has invited friends of our children, who are not of our faith, to dinner, to play, to scouts and to church. She is an example to our future priesthood holders of tolerance and missionary work and charity. And like Catherine Steele and Young Elizabeth Steele and Dail Stapley Bishop, Leslie Bishop all had an influence on my priesthood, these women and Aironn are influencing the next generation of priesthood holders in the Bishop family. I can truly say that Aironn is the best thing that has ever happened to me. May we honor our mothers by heading their teachings and love, by following their council and by exercising our priesthood in righteousness. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Is it a 2 or a 5?

Ethan opened his card from Grandpa Great Larson and out fell a five dollar bill. He held it up and said, "I have a two paper!" When I looked over to see what he was talking about, I noticed it was upside down. I told him to turn it around and when he did, he smiled even bigger and said, "Now it's a five paper!" I wish all money would multiply for us the same way!

Friday, May 9, 2008

Happy Birthday Ethan!

Today Ethan turns three and part of me can't believe he's already three while the other part is having a hard time realizing he isn't already four! The kid is - in his own words - incredible and amazing. Most days I love spending time hanging out with him and enjoying all he says and does. You NEVER, and I mean NEVER, know what is going to come out of his mouth next. He has a fun and energetic personality that is full of questions. Sometimes I swear I can see him actually absorbing the knowledge around him. One of his favorite words right now is, "Why?" and believe me, he uses it a lot! Don't get me wrong, I don't have the perfect child more than anyone else does. He has a wicked screech/scream thing he does whenever he doesn't get his way or whenever Logan is near. He is also the bossiest three-year-old I know but some how his personality makes all that go away in a few minutes. I asked Gary last night as we were going to bed what he thought Ethan would learn in the next year and both of us just started to laugh. One of those laughs that meant we weren't sure we were prepared to teach him all he would be ready for. From learning to spell his name and repeating his phone number to having a definite opinion on his wardrobe, this kid is full of it!

Ethan, we love you and love having you as part of our little family. You bring joy and love to everyone around you and we hope this next year will be full of fun memories for you!

Thursday, May 8, 2008


Here we go again. Dylan is once again teething. I saw the signs of two top teeth finally coming through. For the most part he has been pretty good but the last couple of days he refuses to sleep during the day for very long and the poor kid is TIRED! It will be good when he has more than two teeth because he won't eat baby food any more and the options are that vast when there are only two bottom chompers involved. I should have purchased stock in Tylenol and Motrin when we had Tom because boy have I bought it in bulk!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008


So, there we were. Dylan, Ethan and myself driving home from the dry cleaners on this rainy morning. I was feeling pretty good about myself - first sign it will all come crashing down - singing songs with Ethan. When we got to the ABC song he told me he wanted to sing solo so while he was belting it out I figured I would quiz him on the sounds the letters make. We did four or five and he was getting them all right and I was getting more and more smug about my brilliant child in the back seat and wondering if there was a gifted and talented preschool I could send him to. I decided if I wanted to have him reading by the time he enters preschool this fall at age 3, I better help him start identifying beginning and ending sounds like Logan is doing in Kindergarten. So, after explaining that the game was changing and I would tell him a word instead of a letter, I started.

Me - "First word, dog"
Ethan - contemplating for a minute and then, "Woof! Woof!"
Me - laughter

Once again I explain the rules and he seems to understand.

Me - "Tree, T-Ree, Tree"
Ethan - "Hmmmmm. Grow!" Complete with hand gestures out the window to the trees growing in the rain.
Me - more laughter
Ethan - "Why are you laughing Mom?"
Me - "You make me happy."

More explanations about how the game is suppose to work complete with examples of words and the beginning sounds. I just know he has it this time!

Ethan - without hesitation "Lipstick!"
Me - More laughter and a realization that this is NOT a skill he is ready for yet.

The funny thing is, I don't wear lipstick!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Nutritional Value of PB&J

Lunch at our house is fairly simple as long as there is bread, peanut butter and some sort of jam or jelly. Logan, Ethan, and Dylan LOVE PB&Js and if I cut them out using a cookie cutter or if Gary cuts them into the shape of a letter, the boys are in heaven. Well, as with most easy ways out, we eat them a bit too often for lunch. It beat the arguments over anything else. Lately we have begun to use them occasionally for dinner on the go too. Yesterday I think we hit an all time new low. I made them for lunch and didn't get around to putting something on for dinner by 3:30 so when Gary got home at 5:00 there was nothing started. We had to leave for a soccer game in ten minutes so Gary packed a dinner for us to eat on the way to the game and while cheering Tom on at the game. Well, dinner was VERY similar to lunch. PB&Js and cookies. I guess if they are nutritious for lunch, then they must be for dinner too? When ball is over in June, things should slow down and we can start eating slow and easy dinners at a normal time again!

Friday, May 2, 2008


I finally got some film developed and it had some great shots of the little man.

Dylan at Easter. Tom was helping him stand up by holding his hands and boy did he look so big!

Dylan the Harley ridin' dude. This was at the Easter Egg hunt. It was FREEZING that day!

Gary thought Dyl's hair was getting too long. I put off his haircut as long as possible but finally gave in. Boy do I miss that baby fine hair that I played with while he nursed! It was a bit long I guess.

Post hair cut. His expression says it all to me. "What the heck just happened?"

Just chillin' the end of April. Showing off all of his teeth. Will he ever have more than two? I can't believe what he can eat with just two teeth. Last night was bacon wrapped meatloaf, carrots, and pickled beets. Yeah, beets sound nasty but my kids all love them.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Dodge Circuit Finals Rodeo

Each year when the rodeo comes to town, the Forest Service is involved in this field trip day for third graders where they can learn about fire prevention and rodeo stuff. This year my sister brought her class from Preston, Idaho and Logan, Ethan, and Dylan and I joined her. I thought I'd post some of the great pictures from that afternoon. Thanks for letting us come Sunnie and Gary!