Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

Yeah! Halloween night was so fun for us!
We started the evening by making our traditional witches fingers for dinner and pumpkin sugar cookies! I wasn't going to make the witches fingers but Hannah said it would ruin the night if we didn't have them so I had to of course!
Rachelle had two of her friends over and Hannah had one of hers also.
After dinner we went trick or treating. I thought it was so fun. Bailey is the perfect, perfect age for it! She kept saying things like "mom, isn't this the funnest night ever?" or "Mom, isn't it great that our most favorite thing is candy and we get lots and lots of it?" She kept going on and on about what a fantastic time she was having!
Grace was fun for the first half of the night. She liked getting the candy and she really liked hearing people tell her how cute she was. She then began telling Bailey she had enough candy and we should head home. Bailey wouldn't hear of it! So we pressed on for as long as we could keep Grace under control and then we headed home!
The older ones just got home a little while ago and had a blast too.
Everyone got lots of loot and had a fun time. We love Halloween around here and I was so worried we wouldn't be ready with everything going on with the move, but we were able to get the costumes and I was able to make all the favorites and I think the night was fantastic!
I hope you all had a Happy Halloween!

It's Over!

Sad, truly,truly sad! It's over! Zachary's football season is over! Bummer. We love going to the games every week and are going to miss it.

Tonight his team played the last game of the season to Hamilton. It was a bitter loss! See..Hamilton has poached two of our best players. They go around to the schools and lure away the best players to come play for them. So..We found ourselves playing Hamilton and their star player was Shel Don(not Sheldon but Shel Don..fancy) Patterson.he played for us last year before Hamilton poached him. And now they have poached Gerald for next year too! Dirty suckers!

Anyhow... we lost. But only by one point. And we held our ground for most of the game. Not too bad. They are one of the best teams out there and we almost beat them. With them having the best of the best from poaching and us just having boys who work their butts off! So... as you can see.. a bitter loss~ For me anyhow!

But, our boys played their hearts out. And it was fun to watch. Zach was team captain again and I think he really likes that. He loves to get the guys pumped up for the games.He also got to play both ways and he loves that. He loves playing defense and is always a offense starter so he doesn't get to play both ways always. It was nice that for his final game he got to.

Brother Watts from our old ward even came to see some of the boys play. He had mentioned he was going to try to come to one of the games so I thought it was so nice of him to come! Too bad it wasn't one of our games we won but it was still a good game.

So..this is the end of another fun year.

I think we might go through a few withdrawals around here for the next week or so.

Still we always have next year to look forward to.

Hmmm I wonder how old Ethan has to be to be able to start playing football?

Preschool Party and Parade!

Have I mentioned how much I love Bailey's preschool and her teacher? It is fantastic and I love everything they do.
Bailey has been sick this past week and she has been so worried that she might miss the Halloween party and parade, but fortuantly she was feeling better and was able to be there!
During class they decorated sugar cookie pumpkins and played some fun games. At the end of the day they all lined up and had a parade down street for us to see.
I LOVED watching these little ones parade down the street with the biggest smiles on their faces so proud to be there!
It was such a fun day! Mrs. McClure, you are the best and we love your preschool!

Monday, October 27, 2008

52 Blessings Project~ Week 43

This Week I Am Grateful For~ New Beginnings!
I have been excited for a fresh start! A new chance to make new friends, a sparkling clean house (who doesn't love that!), and a new commitment we as a family have made.
We took this move as a opportunity to make some changes for the better in our lives. Tony and I have been feeling as if these kids are growing up so dang fast. And we aren't taking the time to enjoy it. And be in the moment. And be the kind of parents we need to be. And to just chill! We have realized time is short. So we decided to make the changes we need to in order to find peace in our home! It feels good. We went to church yesterday and although I felt uncomfortable with being around new people, they were very kind and I felt a little excitement at knowing that we were going to try to throw ourselves into this ward. And be active, and serve, and try to do better. Last night it was Zachary that came in to round everyone up and remind us that we needed to have family prayer before bed.See.. he does have redeeming qualities ! And today I have been cleaning, and doing laundry, and I cooked a yummy meal. And everyone was so sweet tonight. It feels peaceful this evening. I have been able to chill out a little tonight thanks to everyone pitching in. I am hormonal today and these older ones are teasing me about it but they are helping out and being kind. I feel really optimistic! Funny how my feelings about these things change day to day(hour by hour??) but that is life I think. I do feel like we have been given a new beginning to really change the tone in our home and for that I am very grateful!

Who would have thought?

Who would have thought that I would be relieved for it to be that time of the month?

I'm thinking how tired I have been lately and it must just be from all the stress of moving. My jaw has been hurting from gritting my teeth and I have found myself making a run to get some chocolate and some sweets and my little kids have been fighting like mad and I have little patience for that and my older ones have been arguing more than usual and my husband has been bugging more than usual lately! So~What's up with all that?

So Hannah went to her new school today and I had a bit of a panic attack after I dropped her off. Felt like maybe we did the wrong thing. Worried she wouldn't make any new friends, feel so bad that she has to start over. Will she be OK? Will she make new friends? I feel so guilty!

So I go home and plop my butt down on the sofa to console myself with a Hershey's kiss and a diet coke for breakfast. And worry some more.What's up with all this?
Now I am on edge and can't breathe and thinking what the heck is up with me today?
Oh~I started my period and I am so relieved thinking I guess now I don't need to hurt anyone and I can stop double fisting the chocolate. and Hannah didn't make a bunch of new friends at school but she did go to the park after school to play with some kids from the neighborhood. I think she will be Ok.
And me too. In about a week!
Ahh we get to give birth and go through this emotional roller coaster every month. Aren't we ladies lucky?
My friend Lori sent me a email about stress and I had a good laugh at some of these ways of dealing with the burdens of life ~
*Accept that some days you're the pigeon, And some days you're the statue.*
*Always keep your words soft and sweet, Just in case you have to eat them.*
*Always read stuff that will make you look good If you die in the middle of it.*
*Drive carefully. It's not only cars that can be Recalled by their maker.*
*If you can't be kind, at least have the decency to be vague.*
*It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply be kind to others.*
*Never put both feet in your mouth at the same time. Because then you won't have a leg to stand on.*
*Nobody cares if you can't dance well. Just get up and dance.*
*When everything's coming your way, You're in the wrong lane.*
*Birthdays are good for you. The more you have, the longer you live.*
*You may be only one person in the world, But you may also be the world to one person.*
*Some mistakes are too much fun to only make once.*
*We could learn a lot from crayons... Some are sharp, some are pretty and some are dull. Some have weird names, and all are different colors, but they all have to live in the same box.*
*A truly happy person is one who can enjoy the scenery on a detour.*
Thanks Lori..perfect for my mood today!

Friday, October 24, 2008

I Can't Get Out Of Here Fast Enough!

Tomorrow we are renting the moving truck again and making a last push to get everything out of the house moved. We have been working in the evenings cleaning and finishing packing the last of our stuff and getting anxious to be done!
last night Bailey and I were in my closet sorting through clothes to decide what to keep and what to give away. Bailey screams at the top of her lungs and points to my leg and I see a big scorpion run right past my leg! As it gets past me it lifts it tail up as it gets to Bailey! She was almost stung! I grabbed her and joined her in screaming as we ran for dear life!
Tony had to finish going through the clothes I had dumped on the floor looking for the scorpion. he didn't find my big one but found a baby! Nice! I guess a family of them lives in my closet! So..It should be thrills and chills around here tomorrow as I finish up my closet and get things moved! I just know that big one will be waiting for me! yikes!
So... People keep asking me if I am happy to be moving and how is my new home..So~I love the new home and the old?? Oh yeah..I can't get out of here fast enough! Scorpions and all!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Nates Butt Farm

OK, It's really called Bates Nut Farm but growing up we always called it Nates Butt Farm. And we thought we were funny.
I have found myself missing finding a pumpkin patch as good as this one!
Feeding the animals is always one of our favorite things to do.

It is one of my favorite places! And I was lucky enough to get to take my kids there to get pumpkins for Halloween!
Grammy and Grandpa, and Aunt Suzanne and cousins all came! It was as wonderful as I remember! And having cousins there made it even better!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Sometimes It Just Sucks!

I'll probably be deleting this post by morning, but for now I am going to just vent a little and hopefully feel better.
I find being a mom to be so fun, at times rewarding,and often fulfilling. I may not be great at being a mom but I really try. I worry constantly about them. Am I teaching them to be kind, to be a good friend, to be honest, respectful, to have faith, a love of God, a good work ethic, etc.
And then I worry when I know I fall short. I haven't set a good example, I haven't held them accountable, I have been so overwhelmed I haven't been as good as I can be. I know that there are several things that I have fallen short on. No one needs to tell me this cause I feel the guilt daily as I pray for strength to do better, to be better.I know.
I have felt like I have really been on top of things lately. Clean house, meals cooked, laundry being done, we have been trying to have family prayer every night (big thing for us as we don't do it consistently), a new found commitment from Tony and I to be better parents. Live a life more in harmony with Christ's teachings. We are really trying here.
And here's the thing..I feel like even though we are trying we are failing! I see how one of mine is having a hard time, with honesty, and not having good friends, and not seeming happy. I have been worried and praying for this one.
And then there is Zachary.. here is my greatest worry. He is so disrespectful. To me. He has contempt for me.I am not sure how this has happened or why. he has become hardened.
We got into another huge fight yesterday over his swearing at me and his screaming when I asked him to take his stuff upstairs and then I told him he had to eat what I cooked for dinner. (you know~ Told him this is not a diner and I am not a short order cook)
So tonight at the football game his girlfriend and her mom came. And they sat next to us. And the mom was asking all kinds of questions. She wondered if he ate a lot and if he has grown a lot lately.
I told her in a year and a half he has gone from being a little taller than me to almost 6 ft. I told her he grew so fast he has stretch marks on his side.
After the game Zach was asking what we talked about and I told him. Know what he said? He said "Mom, you freaking a$$hole!"Yes, scream it and repeated it several times.
I'm sure you can imagine how the rest of the evening went.
So here I am in bed. And have been crying and feel like as much as I try I just seem to be failing as a parent. I feel like we are really starting to have problems here and it just keeps getting worse.
Man do I feel so discouraged.
So I am going to go to bed. And tomorrow I think I will feel better. And I will hope for some peace of mind and pray for guidance.
I am sure that this won't feel so awful then. And then I will need to delete this!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Is This A Magical House?

The entire time we were in California, Grammy made it her job to put Bailey and Grace to bed each night. Now these two STILL sleep in my bed so I told my mom it was pointless to try putting them in their own beds at her house. But~She wanted to try anyhow.I of course thought..whatever..go for it you crazy fool!
She would take them upstairs, have a prayer with them and then she would sing three or four songs. The girls would cry and tell her that they wanted to sleep with me. Every time they began to cry grammy would do this kind of growl thing and tell them no crying at grammy's house or she would tell them to open up their bawlers (mouths) and she would put her fingers in and tell them she was taking out the bawlers and they couldn't cry anymore!
Now I think she probably scared the living crap out of them but they actually slept in those beds every single night that we were there! Impressive!
So Sunday night we get home and put them in their own beds and they are so exhausted that they fall asleep instantly! Wow!
Last night we finish setting up their room. We had only one bed up so we finished the bunk bed, put sheets on them, added the princess pillows and put all the toys into place.
At bed time I told Tony to have family prayer in their room and then he sang songs to them and tucked them in bed. We went to the other room waiting...expecting them to come crying at any moment! But~they never came!
After about 10 minutes Tony looks at me with a shocked expression and says "can you believe this? They went to bed in their own beds! Is this a Magical house?"
I replied "nope, Grammy is!"

Sunday, October 19, 2008

52 Week Blessings Project~Week 42

This Week I Am Grateful For~ Big Families!
This past week has been so fun and something that struck me time and time again is how much I love having a big family! I grew up in a family of 8 kids. I don't think I loved it as much growing up but I can see what a huge blessing being a part of this family is! I love my siblings so much! They are the craziest, funnest, loyal, most supportive bunch of people you could ask for! I know that I can turn to anyone of them for help.We are always there for each other.
I always knew from a early age that I wanted a big family just like the one I had! Well, mission accomplished! His, mine, ours we have 10. I love it. But not always.
It has been so fun getting to have Elizabeth with us to spend the day at Coronado Island, or having Anthony come to the beach with us, or sharing some pie with Eric for his birthday. I was thinking about how much I miss having them with us and am looking forward to having all of the kids together again for the holidays!
I love my family and am grateful to have such a big one to love!

52 Blessings Project~ Week 41

This Week I Am Grateful For ~ Our Home Teacher~Brother Clark And His Wife!
I think there is something wrong with us. Our family. For our entire married life we have never, ever had a home teacher that has come to visit us regularly. They usually come one time and then that is it! Never to be heard from again! Maybe we are too scary? Well, I have had this same problem with visit teaching too! Once again my whole adult life I have someone come once, twice if I am lucky then I never hear from them again! Well, it happened here in my last ward. My visiting teachers came twice, then didn't come anymore. They switched me to someone Else, and they came once, then never again! Our home teacher came once, then never again. See... we are scary. And my feelings got foolishly hurt. BUT...We were assigned a new home teacher several months ago. And they have been so kind. And they have come every month. And they have been willing to help us with whatever our needs have been. Whether it is needing a blessing, or bringing by some chicken when I was sick and Tony was out of town, or substituting for our primary class when we were out of town, or tailoring the monthly lessons to the children. Bringing a story that they could relate too. Including both the little ones and older ones!
As we have been working on getting moved I have had a call from brother Clark to see what they could do to help us out. He was there on our moving day and even after working his bum off that day he still insist he will be there next week to help with our final load!
I have been so, so grateful to him and his wife for the service, kindness and love that they have shown our family! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! It has meant so much to our family and for that I am very grateful!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Don't Ya Just Love San Diego?

For our first full day here we decided to go to Coronado Island!

To start the day off we headed down to the harbor. There was this old woman there who was selling jewelery on a blanket. I let them all pick out something since there was nothing more than $3.00 Bailey had to have the necklace with the big dangly earrings of course.The ferry wasn't leaving for another 50 minutes so we walked over to Anthony's to get some lunch. I always love sitting out on the patio watching sailboats go by. After eating we headed over to board the ferry for the ride to Coronado! The weather was perfect! Clear skies, nice breeze...It just doesn't get any better than this!

It was the girls first time on a boat so it was pretty dang exciting! The wind and the smell of the salt air was delicious~ Heavenly! I forget little things like this about growing up in California that I loved!

When we got to the island the kids wanted to head down to the water. I thought maybe we'd just get our feet wet, but Ethan sat right down in the water then laid down in it! Little waves would knock him over and he would just pop back up! He didn't even mind water in his face! Most of my kids scream like crazy whenever waves knocked them down. He just loved it though. Maybe he will be another surfer in the family!

We collected shells and rocks, and played in the water for awhile then we headed into the little town area. They were having a farmers market! So cool! I loved all the fresh flowers. They were fantastic. I need to see if we have a farmers market in Az where I can get some flowers like that for my home. We bought some of the most amazing sweet oranges, some raspberries, and some almonds. It was a yummy snack!

We shopped a little more then ended the day with a ice cream cone before we had to head back down to the ferry for the ride back!

I love, love Coronado island. The condos, the little stores, the beach, the entire feel of the place! My sister in law was telling me how my brother hates going there because he worked there everyday and I just can't imagine ever getting tired of working there! Mike what the heck are you thinking?

After being away for a 11 years I find myself missing it so much and always always took it for granted living by the beach, living in such a beautiful place and it is always so fun to come home for a visit! I loved sharing with my kids one of my favorite places I loved to go to as I was growing up!

Don't ya just love San Diego?

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Ethan Gets A "Real" Haircut!!

I just couldn't stand it anymore! Every time I looked at the hack job Tony did I had visions of kicking that man in the face! It was really something that bothered me! So, I had grandpa take him to Dell's barbershop to fix the mullet he was rockin! Dell's is the barbershop that grandpa took Zachary for his first haircut as a baby so it was kind of fun taking my next boy 15 years later to the same place!

Ethan wasn't liking the idea of a haircut until they gave him a yummy red sucker! This did the trick for awhile. He did get ornery and start to throw a fit after a while. Maybe he wasn't liking that sucker once it was too hairy, or maybe he didn't like the feel of the clippers, or maybe it was his nap time and he was cranky. Whatever it was he wasn't having it anymore and he was yelling at us until they broke out another sucker. Yellow this time! It did the trick and the haircut was a success! No more mullet, and are forgiven at last!
When we were getting ready to leave they gave us the cutest certificate for his first haircut! I love it. They attach a lock of his hair. I was a little sad that it wasn't one of his baby curls... oh well...Time to get over it right?

Thanks Grandpa for taking Ethan for his first real haircut!! You are a brave,brave man!

Doesn't he look much better?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Happy Birthday Eric!

Happy Birthday Eric! His birthday was yesterday. He is officially 23 years old! Can you believe it? I can't! He has grown into such a wonderful young man.
I was fortunate enough to be here in California so they invited us down to share some pie and sing to Eric! It was so nice to be able to sit down and hear about his life and what he is doing, and to share some laughs. I even had to grill him a little as to when he was going to propose to Erica! I'm not sure he was loving that Ü
Here are a few things we love about Eric~
Liz said~I love his big brother traits. He tries really hard to be protective. Sometimes that is really annoying though!
Bailey said~ I love him. His favorite princess is Ariel!

Grace~ He plays with me

Hanna said~ he will watch George Lopez with me. He is nice.

Rachelle said~ I love Eric's Charisma..what does charisma mean? I love his Movie Star good looks.
Dad said~His sarcastic sense of humor! I love that he is a good person!

Ashley~His boldness.How blunt he can be.He doesn't get too serious. He is immature and I am more mature than him!
Anthony said~His personality and his willingness to listen!
Lauri said~ I love his kindness. We were laughing last night at how he has always been Hannah's favorite! When she was a baby and he would come home from school and find her screaming. He would come over and take her and snuggle her and she would just stop. Content. So happy he had her! He is so loved by all of his brothers and sisters and I think it is because he loves them so and is so kind to all of them.
Zachary said~His sense of humor and nice butt.
Hope you had a great birthday Eric! I hope you know how much we all love you!!!

First Night Home!

Sunday night was our first night hanging around and really "being" in our home! It was such a nice night. The weather (yes the weather in Arizona!) was perfect! It was in the low 60s with a nice breeze. We BBQ on the grill and sat outside to eat. It was such a nice night out! The kids played on the new playground set I got off of craigslist for them last week. I kept thinking this is so nice to have a place for them to play or this is so nice to be able to eat outside. It feels so GOOD out here! I was loving it!

As it got a little later and a little cooler we built a fire in the chiminea. Tony almost burnt down the neighbors palm trees in the process! He stuck a bunch of cardboard in it and the flames were shooting straight up in the air! We thought for sure the palms were going to catch on fire! We had a good laugh at how we have the ability to horrify the neighbors from day one! I told Tony we just had to give them a little taste of the times to come living next door to the Herdmans Vidals !

Life in Arizona was actually really nice for a night!