Sunday, May 31, 2009

Just Another Sunday

The day starts out with Chad going almost immediately downstairs to begin 'the interviews'. Dum-da-dum. This is when he takes each child into the office and spends time visiting, reading some scriptures, paying them money they've earned, setting aside tithing, talking about goals for the summer (chores, piano, reading), etc. I like to come down and peek in once in a while. I can tell that the kids just love having that one-on-one with Dad. It shows he cares about them individually and is taking the time (and it's serious time, folks!) to get to know him/her personally.

One gem of knowledge Chad recently discovered was regarding how to parent Micah. They were out practicing tennis yesterday and Chad realized that, with Colin, he can say, "Not like that, Colin. Hit the ball this way." But with Micah, he has to take a different approach, or it will break down Micah and he'll want to give up. Instead, he takes this approach, "You know Micah, when I was learning how to play tennis, my teacher taught me to do it this way (demonstrate)." And Micah can take it no problem. Chad shared this discovery with me last night and I was so proud of my husband!

Back to Sunday mornings, Chad's sequestered down in the basement and I'm occupied with getting clothes ironed, the fixings for dinner prepared, getting the girls showered and dressed. I mean, we're starting this day at, like 7:30 and are going full-force until it's time to leave to be at church at 1. Sometimes it can be a lot of work, but today was so fulfilling and feels like the right thing for us to be doing on Sunday.

We had a most scrumptious dinner (if I do say so myself!). It was a perfect summer meal: Grilled marinated chicken kebabs with red, yellow, orange bell peppers and onions (yes, Amber, I made the exact same thing again today, we liked it so much!), a lovely green salad, fresh fruit (strawberries, cantaloupe, blackberries) and fruit dip, and rolls. I hit the spot like nothing else would have! And the kids were so hungry I don't even think I heard any complaining, hallelujah!!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day

Chad took Ella on a daddy/daughter date a few days ago. He's recognized the need to get to know Ella better. (In this effort, he's been reading 'Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters' by Meg Meeker.) They went to Dillard's and she chose this little ballerina outfit, which she absolutely adores. They played at a playground, and got ice cream. He noticed that when it's just one-on-one it's so much more peaceful and enjoyable. I know Mira is counting down to her turn next week!
Speaking of, here she is! I'd taken her out shopping with me, and she spied this little getup. Now, I rarely just make a frilly spontaneous purchase, but the look on her face when she saw this did it for me. And it's got these cheap-o plastic heeled shoes which she thinks are the bee's knees. So I bought it. And it was worth the joy it brought!!
For Memorial Day we were all stoked to go hiking Waterfall Canyon. We'd totally talked it up (mostly to gear up the girls for the long hike!) and everyone was soooo excited! For the first 45 minutes of the hike, I'm enjoying myself, but in the back of my mind wondering how long the girls will actually make it. We had the backpack child carrier, but we really didn't want to have to use it for Mira unless we absolutely had to. I mean, 38 extra pounds on your back definitely adds stress to the body.
I must say, Mira did rather well. I was pleasantly surprised. That's not to say she didn't spend a fair amount of time in the carrier (Chad and I took turns), but she walked quite a bit, too. And Ella was terrific. Going up was better than coming down, but we had a great time! We estimate it was a 5-6 mile hike and it took us 3 1/2 hours, enjoying the waterfall and everything. Quite the morning for our little crew!
They loved exploring the rocks, insects, dogs we passed, the stream, etc.
My darlings!!
Chad, the master, carrying both girls partway down.
We got back, everyone was pretty pooped, but we all wanted to swim at the Ogden Athletic Club. It was a terrific family day.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

You turn your back for a minute...

...and Micah's up on his bookshelf, getting into all the baby books. Lucky for me (he knows how his mom gets), he didn't pull them all down from the shelf. Just went searching for birthday cards, pictures, etc. for fun.
I'm checking my Facebook, and Mira helps herself to fingernail polish in my bathroom. She attempts to paint her lips (thinking, 'It's pink, same thing as lip gloss, no?'), her entire fingertips,
and the whole tips of her toes. So I get mad, and she withers up and tells me I'm scaring her. Oops. I gotta watch it. But I think I'm going to start locking my bathroom door. She just has way too much fun in there getting into my stuff.

We have a new cool little virtual tour of our home in it's entirety here: http://www.tourfactory.com/513319 (try to look past the obvious broken bar stool in the kitchen shot. Tacky, I know, be we are losing household items one by one, here...chairs, dishes, etc. It's the cost of having children. Can I get a, "Heck, YEAH!"?

Okay, AND I just noticed that I had, like, 25 comments to moderate all the way back to December. What the heck? Does anyone know why I have to moderate some comments and not others? I've got to fix that. So if any of you feel ignored because your comment was never published and I didn't acknowledge you, I'm sorry!

Oh, and another thing I thought you all might find interesting. Chad emailed Congressman Rob Bishop the other day regarding setting limits on government spending and growth. Well, yesterday evening who should call but Mr. Bishop himself. No joke! He told Chad he was calling from his D.C. office and was reviewing his emails of the day and wanted to personally call and talk to Chad about this. He said it gets discouraging there holding steady to his principles, but he's determined to do what he thinks is right and what the people he represents want. So that was pretty exciting. We were really surprised at the phone call, but very pleased!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

May Days

Yesterday evening, as we're rounding up the kids for bedtime, I'm calling Ella for the bedtime story and I hear her voice, but can't locate her. I thought I heard her in her bedroom, but didn't see her. Upon further inspection, there she is, all snug and cozy in her toy box inside her closet. She didn't want to come out. It was her new "cozy place". How fun to be young and little and squeeze in somewhere small and make it your own.
Yesterday Chad ran his 1/2 marathon (13.1 miles). Yikes. In 2:14. This is right after he came through the finish line. The kids were excited to see Dad and congratulate him. Colin asked how old you have to be to run one. He tells me he'd like to do one when he's a teenager. It was inspiring, standing at the finish line and watching the runners come in. You saw those who came in just under 2 hours, who probably had that 'time to beat' on their minds for months. We saw a wheelchair marathoner come in just after 2 hours--incredible. Families, husband/wife teams, younger, older. It was terrific to watch.
Tonight we had Mom and Dad Barnett, Amber, and my mom over for dinner (Dad's in Texas visiting Chris). It was such a beautiful day. Must've been 80-something degrees. Barbecued bratwurst, homemade french fries, corn on the cob (or, as Ella might accidentally call it 'corn-on-the-dog'). Nice to visit. The kids love to spend time with their grandparents and any aunts and uncles they can get!
On a side note, my friend, Laynie, who's been profoundly deaf since birth, recently had a cochlear implant. It's been incredible following her journey into the world of the hearing. She talks about the new discoveries she makes on her blog: http://laynieslittleleaps.blogspot.com You can see video of her doing listening therapy as well. It's hard to imagine what it would be like going from hearing next to nothing to the toilet flushing, your cereal 'talking' to you in the morning, yourself chewing, a page turning, etc. The science is amazing.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Quite a Weekend

This weekend was filled with celebrations. Colin's birthday Saturday, and Mother's Day Sunday. It was terrific!

Sweet Ella
Mother's Day before church with my two handsome boys.
With the smiley girls.
Chad and I
I send out a big 'I love yoooouuuuu!' to my mom. I got to spend a little time with her Sunday. (Wish I had a picture to post. I'll steal hers to post when I can get it.) I have a dear mother, indeed. She always strove to make our home one of peace and love. She gives compliments freely, expresses love through word and deed, and is ready to drop anything at a moment's notice for her children. I realize more and more how blessed I was to have her raise me.
Colin's 8th birthday party. He had such a blast on this 'bike riding birthday'. All his friends brought their bikes and rode around the trails. You can see the joy on Colin's face as everyone sings to him.
Micah's running toward me, with Chad trailing everyone on the path, and Ella on her trike.
Mira and I held down the fort with watermelon and juice drinks for refreshment.
Ella's all ready for some fun!
Colin geared up.

Colin got to go out with each set of grandparents for dinner and shopping. Boy, did he feel like a king! His birthday is going to be quite separate from his baptism. The baptism will take place in several weeks. He can hardly stand the wait!