Monday, December 31, 2007

Silly Packers!

During a stressful time of packing and unpacking I found this box and was reminded of everything wonderful! Not to worry, we were good with their toys!

They both also went and wrote "Fragile" on every single box!

On the B Side: I am grateful of my amazing little children, the best Packers ever!

Sunday, December 30, 2007

We Like to Move It, Move It!

I wrote this in the midst of packing up our home the week before Christmas;

"Twas mere days before Christmas and all thru the house
Our things were packed in boxes and ready to move out
The children eyes wide with wonder trying to understand
‘How could this be?’ and ‘Why now?’ they innocently demand.
There are no good answers other than we’re doing what’s right
Despite our trials He has promised to make our burdens light
Sometimes we must give up something we love with our heart
We know that more blessings Heavenly Father will impart
We’ll always be together and that’s never to be taken lightly
The password is courage and hope is shining brightly."

Quite luckily the children although they do not understand are far more resilient than myself. They have been excited as there is a train nearby and the fact that they deem it the Polar Express makes their hearts leap with excitement!

On the B Side: I am grateful that our family is together and I have continually emphasized that no matter where we go or what we do that we are always a familiy and will always be together! xoxo bv

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Our Baby is now the size of a ....

RASPBERRY! The raspberry (plural, raspberries) is the edible fruit of a number of species of the genus Rubus. Much more endearing however is the thought of our new baby in his or her tiny human form as the mere size of a raspberry!

I read today that the babies eyes, nose and tongue are forming this week. The bones are starting to harden and the gender beginning to distinguish itself; however, it will not be known to us until 18 weeks.

With my first two littles ones I did not find out their gender until delivery. I really enjoyed not knowing and it made it even more exciting to tell people. The poor little darlings ended up wearing yellow for the first two years of their life because of it. The preparation this time will be welcomed and it will be fun for the kids!

It will also significantly reduce the amount of yellow in our home ;)

On the B Side: I am grateful to be able to go thru this miraculous process again! I love knowing that my body is changing for the explicit purpose of welcoming another beautiful little spirit into our family! xoxo

Friday, December 28, 2007

Heard in our Home Today

"If I were you Mom I'd be really mad at you!"
-Dayton Homet

On the B Side: I am grateful for that darling little boy!!


I have been following a very touching story on about a little boy who was the victim of a malicious crime in Iraq. This sweet boy was set on fire by unknown assailants. His face has been grossly deformed and his pain unimaginable.

If you have a few moments please read the story of little Youssif and how he got his smile back.

It is a vivid reminder to each of us of the world we live in and quickly puts our own personal struggles into quiet perspective. What I loved most is the human goodness that has come out of such a despicable act of senseless violence.

Having a family of my own I've thought a great deal about what this experience must be like for a small child and his parents. I cannot imagine the devastating aches of their heart and the depths of their pain.

My favorite part of his saddening and touching story is that when Youssif arrived in the US he asked if he was in heaven. He has undergone numerous surgeries to date and has even had the pleasure of meeting Spiderman!

On the B Side: I am grateful for the human altruistic emotion I have experienced following this and also for the insight it has offered into my own life. There is much good in this world and I love knowing that people took action to help this little child and his family. XXOX

Thursday, December 27, 2007

I've Recently Been Reminded...

In the Quiet Heart is Hidden Sorrow that the Eye Can't See

On the B Side: I am thankful for the quiet Christlike reminders that come during the seemingly most difficult of times. xoxo

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Heard In Our Home...

Says Ellie as she climbed up on my lap while I was working on my laptop "Mom, Why do you smell like Jello?"

I proceeded to ask her if Jello Smelled good or bad she responded, "Good". Whew! She had me concerned.

Last night while we were all drifting off to sleep she quietly asked, "Mom, why do we talk?"

On the B Side: I love the innocence of children!

Holiday Highlights

My favorite will remain the innocent comment that Dayton made while lying in bed Christmas Eve. He innocently and unprompted by anything remarked, "I love the Christmas Spirit." He is such a tender hearted child. Ellie sense my joy at his commentary and hopped out of bed, stomped around and said, "I hate Christmas". Heaven forbid she should not receive some attention albeit negative or not!

The kids were up until 11:30 PM Christmas Eve brimming with a conglomerate of excitement and impatience. At 6:30 Dayton stumbled around due to a bad dream when all of a sudden he noticed the Christmas tree and was struck by remembrance. He started shouting, "Santa's been here, Santa's been here. Wake up everybody!" and he flipped the lights on in the Master bedroom (where all 5 of us were nestled due to the recent move). I saw three squinty eyed faces pop up and the girls raced out of bed!

Christmas music and a plethora of giggles filled our new family room as the children raced to open their gifts. We cut back considerably this year and I'm fairly certain that they did not notice as they all seemed well pleased. Mark was falling asleep while video taping and I'm certain we took few pictures as we were rather enjoying those moments too much to notice much else.

We drove each of the children to their respective parents home to run through the routine and experience their second Christmas for the day. I slept from 11 AM until 3:30 PM Christmas Day and it was delightful!

Mark's Father and his wife Cynthia stopped by in the afternoon and we were pleased to have company. Mark worked all day on cooking a turkey that we took to my Mom's for dinner that evening before picking up the Dayton and Ellie. It truly was a relaxing and enjoyable day!

On the B Side: I am grateful for the humble birth of our Savior. I love that we can commemorate this event each year and reflect upon his life here on this earth. XXOX

Monday, December 17, 2007

Jazzing it Up!

Check out our little man! He's part of a Jr. Jazz Basketball team that his Dad signed him up for and he loves it! After his first practice he called me to tell me that he ran races, played Red Light Green Light and most importantly that he 'waughed and waughed and waughed' because it was so much fun! His Uncle Bryan is his coach and his cousin Neal is also on the team! DD Cakes is #3 in this short clip!

On the B Side: I am grateful to watch me children learn and grow each day! They make my heart smile!!!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Oh Baby!

Yes! The ticker at the top of this page reads true! For those who have not heard it is offically official. We are expanding our family by yet another and we are very excited! Baby Bumble has a strong heart beat that we were able to both see and hear today!! There were some nerves involved and the Toyota that slammed into us on I-15 on the way to the ultra sound seemed like a bad omen but alack and alas all is well and Baby Bumble will make his/her triumphant appearance in July!

Merry Christmas to us!

On the B Side: I am grateful for the opportunity we have to welcome another little one into our family!

Monday, December 10, 2007

The Craziest Thing I Have Ever Seen

G.I. Jane. We'll call her G.I. Jane.

There are several reasons that I could not bring myself to document last night with a photograph.

1. I could not risk humiliating my child who knew she chose poorly.
2. I did not want to risk entertaining or encouraging her behavior.
3. This only happens to other people! Certainly I am not a negligent parent!

The kids had been tucked in their beds for over an hour. I tired of reprimanding them so Mark came upstairs. All I heard was, 'Are you kidding me?'. Images of clothes pulled from the dresser and strewn throughout the room danced thru my head and mostly I was just hoping he would quietly handle whatever the dilema was. I was not so lucky and certainly glad I did not miss out on the situation!

Green. Our youngest daughter had colored her body green. Every inch of exposed skin that she could manae was carefully camoflauged. She must have worked hard being the perfectionist that she is and given the quality of her work.

She hiked her jammie pants and sleeves up as high as they would go. She got her face and her neck the best she could without being able to see them herself. She had her sister complete her back and from the soles of her feet to her knees were red smiley faces completely engorged in a solid blanket of green. From her elbows to her finger tips and from the top of her rib cage to the top of her pull up. Green.

She spared no parts and managed to meticulously color in between all of her fingers and toes. The belly button was not forgotten and she seemd most proud of that. Her face and neck displayed the least amount of damage but given some additional time I'm sure she would have found a way to complete and perfect the task. Green.

Mark drew the bath and as she stepped in the water instantly hued a brilliant shade of jeweled green! It was hard not to laugh and easy not to raise our voices. I'm sure the sting of disappointment made a powerful impact. We scrubbed and scrubbed and then drained the tub and filled it back up for a clean rinse.

She was a strange cross bewteen an obsessive/excessive tattoo junkee straight out of the city and an amazon woman raised deep within the jungle not displying any signs of civilty! It was startling to see her which again begs the photo image as I'm certain my words do the scene no justice.

She is a funny one who still bears the marks of last night's deeds the next day!

On the B Side: I am grateful that Ellie is her own little person! It's not easy being green! xoxo

Friday, December 7, 2007

El Farol!

This dancing singing Santa at our favorite Mexican hot spot bopped Ellie in the head! Dayton was confused and Ellie was forgiving and they both kept on smiling!

On the B Side: I am grateful for Rebecca for taking this cute picture! Thanks Buggles!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Don't You Wish Your Elves Were Cute Like Mine?!

While my Dad was here he had more than just a little fun with my moonbeams! Check out our little Elves!

Elfing Around

On the B Side: I am grateful for silly things that help us take a break from the stress of real life. It gives us time to relax, enjoy life, remember the things that are really important and then refocus ourselves! Two thumbs up for giggles!

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Snow Day!

Our snow day was not complete without walking thru the neighborhood in the street, catching snow flakes on our tongues, making snow angels AND drinking hot chocolate! Don't ask about the silly vampire teeth...

On the B Side: I love the simplicities in life that we can appreciate together! There was no stress, no squabbling, no agenda and no money spent. We made some fun memories that will not soon be forgotten! Have I mentioned how much I love my children?! I absolutely love spending time with them!!! xoxo

Whatever Normal is, We're Back to It!

Grandpa John left us early Friday AM. He just missed the big snow storm! We were spoiled as he busied himself being Grandpa, cooking, cleaning, doing laundry and he made runs to the grocery store!

His time here always goes too fast. We appreciate that he's able to take time away from his clients and life at home to fly across the country and "relax" with us! He survived 60+ people at Thanksgiving and was a huge help when Dayton was home sick.

He talked me into a fake Christmas tree for the first time ever. I'll admit that I've been strongly opposed for years. He was here to help fluff it and all that jazz.

Bad Dad took us out for a Christmas dinner and we enjoyed ourselves. We had a nice time and laughed lots.

Needless to say we're already lookin forward to my Dad's next visit in the Spring and with a little luck I sure would like to head to PA next summer!!!

On the B Side: I am super grateful for my Dad! We have always been close and I still enjoy our daily calls. He continually supports me...even when he doesn't agree and is patient even when I'm not! He's my teacher, my dear friend and my Dad! I'm pretty sure that makes me one well blessed girl!

Saturday, December 1, 2007

3 Parts Giggles and 1 Part Bubbles

Presently Mark's brother Jeff and his family live on street over from us. We really enjoy being in the same neighborhood and it's lots of fun for the kids! Last week two of their children came over to play for the evening. They also have an Ellie! Ellie and Noah were here and all five of the monkeys ended up in the tub! The kids always have tons of fun together and all get along super well!

On the B Side: I am so grateful to have family live so close nearby!

Let it Snow Let it Snow Let it Snow!

We finally had our first real snow fall during the night! Everything is completely covered and absolutely beautiful! The kids are all sleeping and will be so excited when they wake up. I am actually hearing the first stirrings and when one of them wakes up (doesn't matter which one) they always wake the other two up!

Last night Uncle Jazzy babysat while Mark and I went to see "Dan in Real Life". The beginning was slow but we laughed and of course in the end I cried. It was a brief date night but still a nice chance to spend some time together. Originally Marky was supposed to work so I was excited that he made time to sneak away! Dayton made us promise to bring back some popcorn and Ellie always inquires as to whether or not we will kiss on our dates!

On the B Side: I am grateful for my Marky! He does a fantastic job providing for for us and more importantly tenderfly caring for us. He's so easy to love and has a heart the size of Texas! Life would have so many less giggles without him. I sure do love him and count him among my most special blessings! xoxo

Monday, November 26, 2007

The Station by Robert Hastings

I found the parable that I reffered to in an earlier post! Jessie Clark Funk also sings of this idea. I hope another enjoys it as much as I do!

The Station by Robert Hastings

On the B Side: I am grateful for the moments of clarification that come. It's like your mind is opened up and you remember all over what it's all really about. You feel a genuine gratitude in your heart and a renewed desire and determination to do better, be stronger and give more.

The Journey

After reading Clancy Pants latest post my mind was brought back to a poem that President Hastings shared with us on our wedding day. While I was unable to locate this particular poem I did find something of great beauty that I would like to share!

"One day you finally knew what you had to do, and began, though the voices around you kept shouting their bad advice --though the whole house began to tremble and you felt the old tug at your ankles. "Mend my life!"each voice cried. But you didn't stop. You knew what you had to do, though the wind pried with its stiff fingers at the very foundations, though their melancholy was terrible. It was already late enough, and a wild night, and the road full of fallen branches and stones. But little by little, as you left their voices behind, the stars began to burn through the sheets of clouds, and there was a new voice which you slowly recognized as your own, that kept you company as you strode deeper and deeper into the world, determined to do the only thing you could do --determined to save the only life you could save."

~ Mary Oliver ~

These words remind me of our journey here in this world. There are so many influences in this world putting us down. They tell us that we aren't good enough, that we are of little worth and that we don't matter. We become preoccupied with "things" and lose site. We allow ourselves to become stressed and overwhelemed. These are the voices of the world and they tug at us and weigh in our hearts. These subtles influences try to take us away from the things that matter most.

As we move forward and trust the one voice that matters, that of a loving Heavenly Father we have hope, we begin to more clearly see ourselves for who we are and we realize our own sense of purpose. The road still remains full of fallen branches and stones that serve as impediments in our path but we suddenly come to the realization that we are not alone, that we can overcome these obstacles and we can FEEL hope. More importantly we learn that we can help others and it is all part of the process, part of the journey.

As a mother never has all of this been more ciritical and I love it! I love living it and I love picking myself back up every time I stumble. I love watching the children. Their resilency, their strength and their desire to keep trying impresses so powerfully upon my heart. They truely are amazing and my greatest source of hope.

On the B side: I am so grateful for the the light that is shining brightly on my journey! Even during some of the darkest hours I have quietly been reminded and reassured of who I am, why I am here and what I need to do. "When dark clouds of trouble hang o'er us there is hope shining brightly" and yes the password is courage! xoxo

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Thanksgiving Part II

Tonight was Thanksgiving with my family. My Dad is still in town and we made arrangements to have all three kids for church this afternoon and dinner despite the fact that it was the off weekend. My Mother-in-law came up from Lehi and my Mom and Mikey made the trip from Holladay. Wih, Jazzy and Micci also graced us with their presence.

The London broil was delicious and was not complete without the funeral potatos! The kids decorated the Christmas tree and enjoyed the fun prizes Wih brought them. We all laughed quite a bit and had a nice time.

Wih brought me some burlap to remedy my three trees on the front porch and my mom brought the kids some fruit. We have way too many desserts in the fridge!

We were late for Church today again but nonetheless we were there. Sharing time was fun and my class was really well behaved today. The lesson was on tithing and the object lesson was of ten apples, one of which goes back to Heavenly Father. At that point the apple is cut and shared with the class to demonstrate that these resources and shared with others. I can't claim that as my own but it was a powerful demonstration!

My family now sleeps and I was thinking about rearranging the Christmas decor on the tree as to dispurse it. All of the ornaments are in the front around three feet from the ground! It makes me smile and for that reason I think I'll leave it as is for tonight!

On the B Side: I am grateful for memories. I love making them. I love thinking about the ones we have made and I love learning from them. I love memories!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!!!!!!!

I have been super excited! I love this time of year so much! I have my Christmas cards made, personalized, signed and ready for the mailbox! I was hoping to have them out by Black Friday but fell a little short. Regardless, I am determined to get/be organized!!! It's been two years since I sent cards out and it feels good to have my head in the game again. I also have my neighbor gifts made and ready for delivery Dec 1st. I love making time for these simple activies!!

My Dad has been in town and took us to dinner tonight for Christmas. We had a blast at Famous Dave's. Marky was busy rubbing Jazzy's back making him uncomfortable and I'm pretty certain our server thought they were together which makes me smirk and I'm sure that anyone who saw Marky smack Jazzy's backside on the way out thought the same!! Keep in mind that the Jazz man is a homophobe and my darling husband is quite the antagonist!

The children were home for a few hours today unexpectedly. Dayton was busy softly stroking my head. He innocently asked, "Mom is this the hair you had when you were a little girl". He really does make my heart smile. Beans snuggled up close to me as she drifted off to sleep and it doesn't get much better than that!!

We got the tree up today and it looks great! We'll decorate it tomorrow after church/dinner while the fam is here. We're having Prime Rib and the beauty of this is that I am not cooking ;)

I am all set for the children to come home tomorrow morning and I have my Sunday school lesson all prepared for the children. I duped my Dad into attending the 3 hour block at church with me last week and I must say I am quite proud of myself...although I am fairly certain he will not be in attendance tomorrow.

On the B Side: I am grateful for good feelings!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

~Aye Carumba!

Star in Your Own JibJab! It's Free!
I made this a few weeks ago and the kids and I are still giggling about it!

On the B Side: I am grateful for giggles!

The Brady Bunch and then some!

Last weekend my Clancy Pants and her family came down to SLC from IF and stayed with us. Unfortunately Mark had to work most of the time but we all had a blast. I'm sad that I didn't take any pictures.

On Saturday I was babysitting for some friends so we had a total of 7 children running around our home (compared to just 6 the rest of the weekend!). My Dad is also here from PA and keep in mind that my brother lives with us... we literally had a party!

Here's a run down of activities. Keep in mind the the children ranged from ages 2 to 7 and we had at least 5-6 adults here and 2 extras Saturday evening.

Potty Accidents: 3 (and two of them were Ellie...which never happens anymore!!!)
Kids sleeping in my room: 3
Boys: 4
Girls: 3
Hoot-n-Nanny Pancakes: 2 nine by thirteen pans Saturday morning
Casualties: 1 (Poor Kayla biffed it on the sidewalk)
Trips to the Park: 1
Christmas Cookies Made: 2 batches
Late Nights past 11 for the Kids: 2
Late Nights past 1 AM for me and Clancy Pants: 2
Movies Watched: 2 (Madagascar both times!)
Tears: Only a handful when I put the tubby toys away (Sorry, RoRo)
Loads of Laundry: 7 (these were all mine!)
Gallons of Apple Juice: 3
Gallons of OJ: 2
Gallons of Milk: 2
Instruments Played: 2 (guitar and piano)
Waffles: I have no idea how many there were but man were they flakey (Bad Dad!)
Highlight: Clancy signing 'A Long Time Ago' with Dustin's crazy Kata

We had no real squabbles, no injuries on the tramp, no runaways and no time outs!! TV time was minimal and the weather was beautiful! The kids were really awesome and played so well together. We were late for Church on Sunday but at least I had my lesson prepared ;)

On the B Side: I am grateful for the best of friends!

Friday, November 16, 2007

And These Are the Days of Our Lives...

On the B Side: I am grateful for my amazing children and the moments we share! Each second that passes is one that we cannot get back. I love, love, love passing them with those I love most. My moonbeams are such a tremendous source of joy!!!!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Brain Tumor for Breakfast

Yes, this is a reference to "Heathers". I threw it in for you, Cinderbutt!

My poor little DD Cakes has been having chronic ear infections, headaches and spontaneous nose bleeds. Needless to say I have been more than just a little freaked, especially considering he was recently in the ER for difficulties breathing. I will admit that the very idea of anything wrong with him...especially in his heads send me spiraling in my mind. Just say no to brain tumors!

He did a chest scan at onepoint; however, there was a visible mass of sorts that they passed off as his adnoids. My issue was that his adnoids were removed when he was 2. Regardless, my brave little boy went to see the ENT again. Dr. Tagge did a great job with his tubes/tonsil & adnoidectomy so I was relieved to see him again.

D's ears were perfect! The Doc did order a Cat Scan and we were relieved to learn that he has a maxillary sinus infection. There were no visible masses/lesions which was wonderful news! So my buddy doesn't need tubes, any thoughts of a tumor is out and he is merely being tested for allergies instead.

Dayton was so dang brave during the Cat Scan! I was in a slight panic because the Tech was less than personable, I couldn't be in the room nor was there a window and because I had no idea what to expect and hence could not properly set his expectations.

It was fast and painless and I still marvel at his courage in such an uncertain situation! He has also been a great patient taking his antibiotics over the past few weeks and has proven diligent with his nasel spray! He really is such a great little guy and makes me one proud Mom!

On the B Side: I am so grateful for health insurance. I know that know all are so lucky and I don't know where we would be without this blessing.

Friday, November 9, 2007

A Window into Wih's Heart

My precious Wih has an incredible eye! She is an extremely talented individual and very much enjoys capturing images of the world around us. She has compiled a set of images that reflect an essence of natural beauty in simple everday life that are overlooked quite regularly and much without seemingly beauty.

There are many tales of my Wih. My gratitude for her runs deep. She's been a surrogate parent, my strength, my confidante, the voice of clarity and my only baby sitter! Despite the fact that she has many sisters, I claim her as my own and I refuse to share her. So to her sisters I say, sorry ladies! You have each other and I have my Wih!!!

On the right there is a link, a window into Wih's heart!

On the B Side: I am grateful for my Wih!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

I'm the DJ, You're the Rapper

This is a phrase frequently used in our home. I don't know what it means or where it even came from but the kids take turns pretending to be the DJ and the rapper respectively and anyone else who joins this convo is a groupie. Once in a while they will add a rocker in just for kicks and I can't be sure what really constitutes a rocker (or a DJ, or a rapper or a groupie!) but I rather enjoy it nonetheless. There is not a game of skill and really not much of a game at all but sure is a lot of fun. Just a simple phrase that turns into a random, meaningless discussion that eminates giggles and no real logic!

These are the moments that I cherish the most.

On the B Side: I am grateful to be a Mom!