Friday, May 31, 2013

Bubbles and bottles

Today was better.  The kids entertained themselves blowing bubbles and playing outside,  and I was able to get some things done.
Cinderella and I spent some time turning a cardboard box into a bed for her barbies.
The hubs bought tickets for us to go to a play, and then realized we couldn't take baby, thus we left him home with the babysitters.   This is the first time we have left him in the care of someone who isn't an adult.  And I guess he didn't want to take the bottle. We probably won't leave him again for a while.  Maybe once he is eating some solid food.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Is this only the 1st day?

So today was our test run.  If you can call it that.  The two older kids had an hour and a half of school this morning.  I then picked them up, and we went to the doctors office for Aurora's and Baby's well child check ups.  Then I took the kids to a park that isn't too far from the doctors office.  I had packed a picnic lunch of ham and cheese tortilla rolls, sliced apples, bags of chips and water bottles.  Unfortunately at the park it was overcast, kind of drizzly and cold.

We played for an hour, but it kept threatening rain, and I had a hard time keeping Spike where I could see him.  It was almost 12 so I figured we should have lunch, but I wasn't sure how long the weather would hold out.  So we packed up and came home.







Cinderella had gone on some spinny thing at the park, and made her stomach feel queasy   She continued feeling so on the way home.  I passed her back a shoe box, in case she needed to throw up.  It was the only container I could find.

At home there was still sunshine, and it felt warm, so I spread the picnic blanket on our front lawn, put Baby in his bed, and we had our picnic at home.  Cinderella still felt a little sick, so she just lay down on the blanket and munched on potato chips and apples.  Baby was screaming this whole time because he wanted to eat, but I felt like I needed to wrap things up with the other kids before I took care of him.  I got them done with their lunch, and settled with quiet time boxes.  This was our first day to have the full fledged boxes, and I had high hopes.  Too high I think.

After getting them started on quiet time, I went and fed Baby, put him down for a nap, and then went and lay down.  I hadn't been laying down for more than 5 minutes, when Aurora came and opened my door.  She saw I was taking a nap and left, however I was thinking about a conversation I had had with the hubs earlier today, and decided that what I really needed to do during that time was sit down at the computer and get our financial records in order.  We have been terrible about keeping a budget and running numbers on our accounts.  In coming down stairs I found Guy and Aurora playing together.  Aurora then told me she was done with her quiet box, and she wanted my attention.

Guy also told me that he felt like it wasn't fair that Aurora got a whole box, and all he got were legos.  I guess I need to do some revamping on the boxes.  I gave Aurora a few more items, and got her involved again, only to sit down to the computer and have the timer for quiet time ring.  It was set for an hour.   I then had to go and help the kids clean up their boxes, and the kids wanted to move on to the next item on our "schedule".  At this point one child per day has the opportunity to get some one on one time with me.  5 kids, 5 weekdays, 1 kid each day.  Today was Guy's turn.  To keep the other kids occupied while I am interacting with one kid, I let the others play the computer.  Guy and I had a fun time building a swimming pool out of duplos.  By the time that hour was up, Spike had woken up from his nap and was demanding my attention.  He then continued to demand my attention until the hubs got home from work, and we had dinner.  During that time Spike helped me do things, but I had to go about doing them in the style of a 2 year old, which definitely takes longer.

After dinner, I fed Baby again,  cleaned up part of dinner, and then we watched the second half of "Fiddler on The Roof" as a family, and then it was time to put the kids to bed.

Needless to say, I am worn out.  I want to be a fun mom.  I want to be involved with my kids.  I just don't know how to find a middle ground.  It's either all or nothing.  All wipes me out, and nothing makes me feel like a slacker, and I have kids who go around whining that they are bored, they have nothing to do, or they are getting into mischief.


Wednesday, May 29, 2013

End of the school year

In most ways today was the last day of school.  Both Cinderella and Guy have 1 1/2 hours of school tomorrow, then they are done for this school year.  I am not sure if I am ready, but I guess I am as ready as I am going to be.

I have plans, hopefully they aren't too grand.  Hopefully I can keep up with enough of them to keep us all sane.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Random ramblings

Today Guy came home from school with a coupon for a local fun center.  He read it and then convinced himself that when Dad got home from work today they would go.  He showed the coupon to Dad, and then promptly went and put his shoes on and headed for the door.  He was quite disappointed when he found out he couldn't go today.  We will have to take him sometime before the coupon expires.

Baby is going through a growth spurt lately.   He has a day where he eats a lot, then sleeps a lot.  Today was a sleep day, which is noce for me, in that I get a lot done.

I can tell that my children are ready ro be out of school for the summer.  They are in no hurry to go to bed.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Family day

Today was mostly a family day.  We worked on the flower garden,  watched part of Fiddler on the Roof, and just spent some down time, spending time with the hubs and kids.  T'was a good day.

Talks and the cemetary

Once more I am posting in the morning instead of at night.  We had another busy/late night last night.  But at least I am making a record right?

Yesterday Aurora gave a talk in Primary.  Primary is the children's class in our church.  Her talk was on the Word of Wisdom.  The Word of Wisdom, is a commandment that we find in our scriptures in the Doctrine and Covenants.  Joseph Smith received revaluation giving what was at that time a guideline not a commandment.  A later prophet was given the revelation that it be a commandment  and so now we follow it as such.

The Word of Wisdom, gives us council on what kinds of things to put into our body.  It tells us to abstain from coffee, tea, tobacco, and drugs.  It also tells us to eat healthy food, like fruits and vegetables, grains, and to eat meat sparingly.  For more information on it you can look here.


Anyhow Aurora gave a talk on the Word of Wisdom, and talked about how we should eat fruits and vegetables.  She had toy produce that she held up as a visual aid for each food item that she talked about.



Later in the day we went to the cemetery where my Grandfather is buried.  He passed away 11 years ago yesterday.  When it is Memorial Day weekend, we like to take the opportunity to visit his grave and think about him.



Saturday, May 25, 2013

Garden work

Today we spent quite a bit of time and energy working on our yard.   I find the yard kind of discouraging, because it got out of control last summer in my gardens, and now it is taking a lot of work to get it in a workable condition.  I really want to plant some flowers, but I know I need to wait until I have my garden more weed free, and in better shape.

The hubs and I outlined where we want to expand our front flower bed to, pulled a lot of weeds, dug up tulips, and we planted tomatoes and peppers.

Dancing thumb wars

I got in late last night, so this is yesterday's post.
The elementary school had a dance festival yesterday.  They have one at the end of every school year.  So we went and watched Guy and Cinderella dance.





Afterward the school made an attempt at breaking a world record.  The longest thumb group thumb war.  They spent about an hour and a half getting every one into a little fenced off area, then they had us form a long chain, and you were supposed to continuously have thumb wars with the people on each side of you for 5 minutes.  They said they needed 950 something people participating to break the record.  They put us into smaller groups and then connected the groups.
The hubs went in in with Guy and Baby, I went in with Cinderella, Aurora, and Spike.  Baby and Spike didn't participate because they are too young.  (I didn't think I could keep Spike in the chain long enough with out him pulling away.)  The group I ended up in didn't really have a leader.

I realized that I don't consider myself a natural born leader, but when there is a need, and no one is taking charge, it drives me crazy and I will step  up, and take charge.  So as our group was milling around and no one knew what to do, I found the clipboard with the instructions and created order out of our group.

In the end, I don't think we actually broke the record.  From what I heard we were about 30 people short.

(hhhhhhhghnbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbb
.bmbgbbnvbnvcujhgyttftftfrdedxesdrttrftvghgytytttttf)- This is what Aurora had to say.


Last night the hubs and I went to the temple with our temple group.  Baby is still too little to leave with a teenage baby sitter, so he came too, and he and I wandered the grounds, while the others were in the temple.  I found that I was able to ponder and feel connected to my Father in Heaven as I roamed the temple grounds.  In my pondering I realized that over all I don't like to inconvenience myself.  I want to be a fun mom, but when it comes down to it, I don't follow through on the ideas I have, because it seems too hard.  I don't interact with other people, even though I really want to,  because the risk of rejection seems too high.  I take months, and sometimes even years to potty train a child, because I don't like the inconvenience of setting everything else aside (especially my stuff) long enough to just get it done etc.  I am therefor making another goal.  When I am faced with more than one choice, and one of the choices will in the end be harder but be better for me or those around me, I need to make that choice.  I know it will be hard, but I believe the Lord will help me.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Fun or boring lunches

Today I tried making lunch a little bit more fun, and cutting out their sandwiches in the shape of a heart.  They thought it was cool, and commented on it, however they still didn't eat their sandwiches.  Oh well, maybe they can just have boring lunches.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Lunch

I am done with my quiet time boxes now, so I am moving on to my next concern for summer.  Lunches.  I don't like lunch.  First off, I don't ever think to make it until I am hungry and I have hungry whiny children pulling at my legs, and demanding food this instant.  Second, my kids won't eat veggies raw, except a few of them will eat carrot sticks, I am not a junk food kind of person, I like healthy food, and would like to feed my kids healthy food, but they won't eat it.  Third, when I am hungry I want food, NOW.   Fourth,  I have a hard time coming up with ideas of what to make for them.

I am going to try to solve some of these issues by seeing if I can remember to make lunches the night before.  This will be tricky, because it means finding the time, as well as room in the fridge, and the energy at night, when really what I want to do is spend a little bit of time with the hubs and then go to bed.

The other two I am going to ask for suggestions from you readers.  What kinds of things do your kids eat for lunch?  Is there any way you have tried, that works to get picky eaters to eat things they wouldn't otherwise?

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Quiet Time Boxes

Today I finished putting together most of my quiet time  boxes.  I think I still need to do a little bit more for Spike, but other than that they are done.  I will have 3 boxes and 2 stations that I rotate between my 3 older kids.  1 for each week day.  The two stations are playing Legos  and doing coloring, crafts, or play dough at the kitchen table.  Box #1 has felt cutouts that the kids can use to make faces, a bag with Cars themed  Duplos in it, and a dinosaur puzzle.  Box #2 has tanagrams, a bag of market themed Duplos and a Tinkerbell puzzle.  Box #3 has reusable stickers, a bag of cupcake Duplos, and a Princess puzzle.  When the kids get a box they each have 1 specialty item that they can also have for quiet time.   This item is just for them.  Cinderella has paper dolls,  Guy has some small animal figurines,   Aurora has pop beads, and Spike has shape matching boats.

For Spike I also have 1 other bag of Duplos. this one is a zoo theme.  I haven't decided if I will make a whole other box,  or just rotate that bag with the other bags of Duplos so that Spike gets some variety as well.

Monday, May 20, 2013

A Couple More Pictures


 Aurora sitting on the heat vent.


A smiley Baby

Running around with my hair on fire.

The hubs has a phrase he uses for when things are crazy and chaotic at work.   He says every one is running around with their hair on fire.   Well, it doesn't just happen in the software industry,  it happens at home too, and  this morning was one of those days. 
To start off we had a busy weekend.   So busy in fact, that we didn't remember to clean up after ourselves.   The sink was buried in dishes,  there were crumbs all over table top, chairs and floor, the living room was cluttered,  the children had strewn toys around the house, there was laundry in all stages of needing to be taken care of, plus all the regular stuff that needed to be taken care of (feed children,  get them ready for school,  feed a baby.....)  We finished breakfast and the hubs had left for work, Baby woke up and started crying.  So I told Cinderella to get ready for school, and went to take care of baby.  While I was up in his room feeding him , I could hear the kids in the living room, and while I couldn't see them, I could easily guess that they were most likely doing something I wouldn't choose for them to do.  Sure enough, I came down stairs to all of the cushions from the couch piled high, and the couch covered in pillows, blankets,  and toys.  I am trying to be not to strict so I told them to clean up when they are done.  As soon as I leave the room to go start cleaning the kitchen, I hear Cinderella say, "Okay she's gone now!"  I turn around to find Cinderella climbing to the top of the pile of cushions.   I asked if they thought I was stupid.  Told them what they are doing isn't safe, and said they had 5 minutes to have it cleaned up.  I then set the timer, and went back to cleaning the kitchen.   For Cinderella's credit, she was trying to  clean it up.  Guy and Aurora however were fighting against her.  After the 5 minutes were up, I had all the kids sit down, and I calmly told them if they want to have fun this summer, they need to help around the house.   If they leave it all for me, I won't have time to get things ready  for us to have a fun summer.  I need them to clean up after themselves, and help me, or we will just have a boring summer, where we spend all of our time working.
Spike is very attached to me lately.   He is constantly pulling or pushing on my legs and demanding that I pick him up.  This makes it hard to get much done, especially when baby is wanting to be held too.
He is also quite whiny too.  I felt like I was trying to work around him, and baby, and get things done.  Plus I was still trying to get Guy ready  for school, before his ride came, and I couldn't find his shoes.  I kept asking him to find his shoes,  but he kept playing.  Spike decides the kitchen floor is gross, so he gets the broom and starts sweeping it, which makes me smile.  So I take a minute out of my shoe hunt to take a picture.


I then go back to  hunting all over the house and can't find them anywhere.   Finally his ride shows up, and we still don't have his shoes.  So I get him hos flip-flops and tell him he will have to wear them, and have cold toes.  I take his socks off, and shove his flip-flops on his feet.  He starts crying, says he knows where his shoes are, and pulls them out of the coat closet.  So I take his shoes socks and him out to his ride, and tell him he can put them on in the car.
I go back inside to baby crying, Spike whining,  and Aurora asking me what she can do. 
I decide that Spike needs a nap, so I go to put him down for one only to find that his bedding isn't in his room, because the kids had been playing with it this morning.   At this point I put Baby on his crib, Spike down on the floor, go into the bathroom, lock the door, and scream.  Then I am good.  I go back out, calmly find Spike's bedding,  put him in his room,  close the door, then go and help Aurora do her jobs, then get her started3 playing the computer, then go and take care of baby again.  And while feeding him I took the time to write this.  That is my crazy day so far, and it is only 10:30 in the morning.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Leaving on a jet plane.....

Today was the last Sunday before my sister leaves on her mission.  On Wednesday she enters the MTC, and then 2 weeks later she flies out to West Virginia.  We spent the day at my parents house enjoying time with my family, especially my sister who I am going to miss a lot.  I grew a lot closer to her in the 3 months that she spent at my house helping me with my kids.  I know that going on a mission will be good for her, but she will be missed.

This leads me into my next goal.  For the next 18 months, I plan to take at least 1 picture of each of my children once a week.  It could be a picture with more than one kid, or it could be 5 separate pictures, but I am going to pull out my camera, and capture the memories that we are making so that I can send some pictures to my sis each week, while she is on her mission.

As a plus for y'all you will get to see more pictures as well, because I will upload them on here (at least some of them), so that I can be accountable to myself for doing this.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Busy Is Good

Had a busy day today.  However busy is good.  It is hard feel sorry for ones self, or depressed when you are busy.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Exploring Senses

Post by the wife, from the hubs account.

Tonight the hubs and I went on a date about senses.  We tried a new restaurant, which was quite tasty, we listened to some guy singing country music, danced in the rain, and felt the raindrops, we window shopped at an outdoor mall, and saw a lot of fun stuff in a toy store.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Crazy kids, crazy mom

My children are crazy hyper lately, and that seems to make me all the more tired.  I can't keep up with them.  But at least we have a lot of fun.  Today I made more plans for my quiet time boxes, went to the dollar store and picked up a few items, and started scavenging around the house to see what I can find.  So far I have found duplos, colorforms  coloring books, playdough, I will have a station by the legos where they can play those.  I will also have a craft/coloring station at the kitchen table.  I still don't have all of the details worked out, but we are getting closer.

I also spent some time working in my flower garden this morning.  Last year our summer was quite hot, and I was on light duty with my pregnancy, and the weeds and grass took over my garden.  Now I have a lot of work to do to get it back into some kind of order so it looks like nice flowers and not just grass and weeds, with a few flowers peeking out.  My husband and I are going to plot out a better arrangement for it, but first we have to clean it out.  I think my least favorite part of work is doing the tedious part so that you can do the fun part.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Summer Quiet Time Plans

Today I started planning for this summer.  School gets out in about 2 1/2 weeks, and if I don't make some plans, this house is going to be crazy.

Quiet time is something that is crucial when I have all of my children home on a regular basis, but is really hard to enforce, unless I just want to let them watch movies every day.  That is one option, but not what I would like to do.

So after looking around on pinterest I came up with an approach that uses quiet time boxes (boxes made  for each day of the week with a variety of quiet activities inside), and quiet stations.  (Places around the house that will have activities that the children can do on their own quietly. )

I think that part of the key to having success in this endeavor is to be able to keep the children in separate locations for quiet time.  Because if they are playing together, it will get loud, and trouble will ensue.

I am not completely sure all of the logistics  such as what exactly I am going to put in the boxes and where and what the stations will be, but at least I am making progress.

What do you do to help your school age children be quiet during the summer, when you still have little ones who take naps?



Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Crazy morning

The hubs carpooling buddy has been out of town for a few weeks, and we adapted to a more relaxed scheduled   Today was the first day they rode together again.  This meant he had to be ready to go out the door at 6:30.  We try to always have breakfast together as a family, so this meant getting up at 5:30 and getting the kids up at 6.  The last few weeks we have been having breakfast between 7:00 and 7:30, with Cinderella running out the door around 8:00.  So this morning the kids had more time, and they weren't sure what to do with it.  Unfortunately in this house that usually means trouble.
To add to things I think Baby is going through a growth spurt, and so he is sleeping and eating more than usual.  He slept through the night last night, which was wonderful in the amount of sleep it gave me, but not quite so wonderful in the amount of milk my body had stored up over the night.  I was too full for him to get much, and he was more interested in sleeping than eating, which resulted in spending a long time feeding him. This being the case, the children were not as supervised as I would have liked.

All before 9:00 I found myself having to rescue children from a locked room, being informed that Spike was drawing all over the couch in permanent marker, reminding Cinderella of all the steps she needed to do to get ready for school.  Getting Spike and Cinderella dressed only to find them later covered in marker and needing a bath, and then Baby screaming because I finally put him down figuring he was more interested in sleeping than eating.  I had to pump so that I wasn't so full, and he could eat.  It seemed rather crazy.

Other than that, my day wasn't too eventful.  I don't know what I am going to do in a few weeks when school is out, and all the kids are home all the time.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Moms Day

Today was "Moms Day" in Guy's kindergarten class.  I got to go to his class and read books with him, make a handprint flower, a whirly bird, write him a note and eat ice cream.
He had such a big grin on his face, I am so glad I was able to be there for him.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

My Mom

The longer I am a mom, the more I realize what my mother knew, and why she did the things she did.  I am also a lot more appreciative for the efforts she made.  My mom is the mother of 9 children.  She taught us the value of reading, work, and music.  She kept a mostly clean house, she made  most of my clothes when I was small, she works hard, and I never realized just how hard, until I was a mom.

Keeping a house clean, is hard.  Teaching children how to help you keep a house clean is even harder.   Taking care of 5 kids is hard.  I can't imagine being mother to 9.  Finding the time to make an outfit here and there is difficult.  I have no idea how she made all of my clothes.

I asked her about it recently and she gave me her advice.  Clean up as you go.  Keep the kids with you. While you sew, have them play on the floor near you.  When you are ready to move on, clean up that room before leaving.   Make your bed before you leave your room in the morning.  When you finish breakfast, clean up, wash off the table, and sweep the floor before you move on to the next thing.
I started trying to follow her advice, and keeping my house clean suddenly became a lot easier.  My mom knows what she is talking about.

Thanks Mom for all you have done, and all you do.  I love you.

Happy Mother's Day!

Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Aftermath

Have you ever noticed that when you do something that is fun, but a lot of work, at the end you are really worn out, tired, and sometimes negative about the experience, but let a little (or sometimes a lot) of time pass, and what you remember are the positives and you want to do it again.
Today we dealt with some of the short term results.  I spent the evening and morning with some of my siblings and parents, while the hubs took the 4 older kids camping.
I got home shortly after the hubs and kids, to find Spike screaming.  Turns out he didn't sleep that well, and then Aurora woke him early this morning.  The hubs was worn out and so was Aurora.  Cinderella and Guy didn't seem to be hit quite as hard.  But true to form, give it some time, maybe a month, maybe  a few months, and they will be talking about how much fun they had, and how they can't wait to do it again.

Friday, May 10, 2013

A free day

So I am making this post in the middle of the day today, because that is when I have time.  The hubs is giving me a day off and taking the older 4 camping.  They can have their adventure, and I get a break.  I just have to take care of baby.   You know that is funny, when Cinderella was a baby I sure didn't think taking care of just her was much of a break, but compared to 5 kids, 1 baby is easy.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Little quack, and a cute dress

Tonight was the kindergarten plays.  Guy played the part of one of the ducklings in the story Little Quack. 
Aurora also wore her dress/shirt that I just made for her.
Aurora hasn't been sleeping very well lately,  she keeps waking up screaming,  and it takes a while to get her calm enough to figure out what the problem is.  Unfortunately this makes my sleep rather sparse as well.  I will be glad when she out grows thise phase.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Pulling Weeds

This morning Aurora and Spike wanted to play on the front yard, so I went out there to work on my flower gardens while they played.  Ironically enough they would rather help me in the garden than play.  I don't mind that, other than Spike's method of pulling weeds is pulling anything he sees, lilac flowers, iris leaves, rocks, dirt, etc.  But he is trying to help right.  I would just thank him for his help, and try to point to a weed.    I think I maybe got at least the tops off of most of the dandelions that were in the garden.  I know, if you don't get the roots, they will come back, but I figured getting the tops off was better than just ignoring them and leaving them all there.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Strawberry Lime Slushy

Today I played with the kids, did some sewing, and the basic cleaning.
The hubs came up for a lime slushy recipe to make with our new blender.  It was pretty tasty.
Here is the recipe:

2 limes, peeled
1/2 cup sugar
1 quart water
1 quart ice cubes
6-8 frozen strawberries

Blend until fully mixed.

Monday, May 6, 2013

A spoon full of sugar.

Today was a day of mostly playing catch up.  I didn't do a very good job of cleaning up after ourselves over the weekend, so today I had a bit more to do.  However it was still do able.  It was just really wearing.  I have found that spending a lot of time cleaning up after kids without them helping encourages me to be kind of ornery.  But also positive feedback gets more results than negative feedback does.  I just need to swallow the orneriness (not something that is easy to do), and behave with a positive attitude, and praise the help the kids do give me.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Tired = ornery

Last night we got to bed kind of late, and then had to get up at 6:30 this morning.  6:30 isn't usually too early but after a  late night, I don't think I handled it very well.  I was really grumpy by the end of church today. I was quite snappish the whole way home.  Although part of that could have been that we walked to church today, and I was wearing sandles that have more of a heal than I am used to and my feet were hurting, but I know I was definitely tired.
So an update on the vita-mix  yes we did already buy it, and so far we have gotten more veggies in Guy in 2 days that we probably get in him during a normal week.  Not a bad investment, especially if we keep it up.
Let me know your favorite smoothie recipe.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

The things I will do to get a kid to eat.

Today was a good but busy day.  I let myself be talked into a vitamix blender, when Guy, one of my pickiest eaters told me he would eat veggies that way.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Sewing

I have picked up some sewing lately.   I made several pairs of boxers for Guy, and I have been working on a shirt for Aurora lately,  which is what I spent most of my time on today.   Also Cinderella is wanting me to teach her how to sew, which I am kind of intimidated to do, but I will try anyway.
I also took the younger kids to the park this morning,  and got a date with the hubs tonight.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Sleep is amazing

I actually got a good amount of sleep last night.  It made a big difference in my day.  I was able to get a lot of things done, and still be in a positive attitude at the end of the day when the hubs got home.  Isn't it amazing what a little sleep can do.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Adventures

What do you get when you mix a tired mom with a fussy baby an adventurous toddler, a 4 and 6 year old who don't want to obey, a pile of toys, a bunch of blankets and some stairs?
A big mess, a frustrated mommy, and sad kids who just lost some toys.
Life is an adventure.