Monday, February 28, 2011

Attempting something new

Haley is trying her hand at rolling. Oh, I forgot that she can partially sit up too, but that is another tipsy story. Rolling is something she is really trying hard to get down. She rolled over a few weeks back but I am calling that a fluke. Today she really did it and almost went from back to front but was either too tired or her fists got in the way (aka she got distracted by sucking/eating her fists). I hope she is another roller, Peter was so cute when he rolled everywhere.

And for this attempt, well we are just giving it a shot. I am trying to have my own, small homeschooling experience here at home with the boys. Yes, I try to do things with them throughout the day, but I wanted something maybe more defined to help out in their education. In no way am I considering doing it full-time. I am not that organized! I am not saying that the education that Caleb receives is sub-par (well, I may be saying that in some small way). I am just trying to help all of my boys be more prepared for school, for future demands on their brains, and also spend maybe a little more focused time with them. Today's attempt was not smooth and perfect. Peter was obviously bored with sitting at this table and really bored with Caleb translating a book into Spanish. But we tried. Plus the fact that Miss Haley woke up 1 1/2 hours early and cried for a portion of the time on the floor is another bump in the road. But I still think it was good. Man, time flew quickly and I think they may have enjoyed certain parts of the "school day." After Caleb translated a portion of his book he said he was tired, I think that really taxed his brain. There is also so much more I would love to try and study with them but the time is just not there. Sure, if I had them home with me all the time I could do it. But it is good for Caleb to get out of the house for school. And they need time to just play together, but I would love to try and focus on other things with them. If only I could get Haley converted to this schedule thing and figure out how to focus on each boy individually without the other two causing a ruckus... ahhh, if only fairy tales really came true. :) We are going to give this partial homeschooling thing a try and come out of it feeling smarter and better.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Haley the baker

Above photo courtesy of Peter

Today I needed to make some bread to eat for this week and William and Peter were willing to help, so was Haley. I strapped her into the carrier (I love that thing) and we were all set. They were all great helpers. Peter and William love to add ingredients to the bowl and stir everything together. And Haley was happy to hang out and watch everything, she especially liked the motion of kneading the bread. Peter helped keep things clean, William enjoyed playing in the piles of flour on the counter then pushing them off onto the floor (shaking of the head), and Haley got into the action by having her feet covered in flour. The best part about it all, the bread tasted great! Not heavy and dense, not flat and hard, it was light and bread like. The only problem, homemade bread never lasts long enough. We cut into one loaf for dinner tonight and there is only 1/4 of it left. Caleb LOVES bread! Caleb also loves homemade tortillas for quesadillas. Too bad that making tortillas at home does not go nearly as fast or easy as bread. Cafe Rio would never hire me, I am far too slow at making my tortillas, and they are never a circular shape. But Caleb prefers homemade tortillas to store bought so that will be our next cooking adventure.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Counting blessings

No, I have not had a bad day or major trials; I am just really wanting to visually see my blessing written instead of just listing them in my head. Yes, I can do it on my own paper, but then it will get lost in the many piles of stuff I have in my house, this is a much better way to keep the list and have it where I can find it in the future. Here goes...

-He is a fantastic reader!
-He knows Spanish
-He is very smart
-He is really good with Haley
-He is willing to try new foods now
-He is active and a fast walker
-He is faithful
-He is creative and has a great imagination

-He is obedient (most of the time)
-He has a voice
-He is willing to play on his own
-He loves sports
-He will eat bananas
-He is a clean boy
-He has a good imagination

-He is a sweet tempered boy
-Everyone loves him in nursery
-He voulenteers for anything
-He helps whenever he can
-He is eager to play with his brothers
-He says "I love you, mom" and "Thank you" all the time

-She was born full-term, strong and healthy
-She is beautiful!
-Her hair is awesome!
-She has pretty blue eyes
-She can laugh and cry and smile and hold her head up
-She can see and hear

There are more than this but these are the main ones I can think of now. Besides my kids I am thankful that Rob has a great job. We have a house and a garage that is newly cleaned. Our food storage is coming right along that that is great. Rob is probably not thankful for this but he has plenty of work shirts (that he/we can iron). I am thankful to be in primary with the girls I teach and that I can know what my kids are learning and the songs they are learning. We are healthy.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

A good kid

"Snow and Sunday reminds me of Jesus and being baptized." Caleb's comment upon seeing the falling snow this morning. So sweet. One other comment from my oldest, "Because today is a Holy day, that's why." I think that Peter was talking to him about dong something on the computer and Caleb was telling him why they were not going to do it today. Sometimes he makes me proud.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Peter's birthday

So, I am late in posting but I will try to remember some details. Peter had a ton of fun on his birthday. He was able to go to school then come home with a couple of friends and have a tiny party. They had fun with their dinosaur hunt, and playing together. After Caleb came home from school and Rob came home early from work (yeah, Dad!) We had another dino-party for just the family, opened presents and then we headed for the dinosaur museum. That was really awesome!

Look at the size of that dinosaur! It is such a fun museum. We went to Thanksgiving Point to explore their dinos and it was so worth it. They have this cool star tunnel that the boys loved going through. It was as if you were walking suspended in air and there was an echo the boys loved. They had a section on paleontologists that was less than exciting. Then you got into the dinosaur bones where they had so many different ones. I loved the huge skeletons and the boys loved the little cave they had replicated underneath some bone displays. They had running water in certain parts where there were live fish swimming next to skeletons seeming to get a drink. They had images flying in the air and a little play area where the boys had fun putting on a puppet show. Then there was the erosion table that the boys could have spent hours at. Imagine a huge sand box with running water, little toy trees and dinosaurs to play with and you could do whatever. Build mountains of sand to block the water then have it all come spilling though in a flash flood, or making your own canyons and rivers. The boys loved it! My next favorite place was where they collected all of the undersea dinosaurs and their skeletons. That was cool! Those things were so large and awesome! My only complaint, they should charge adults half what they do. As a parent you do not see even a half of the museum because your kids are darting to and fro and passing all these cool things that you would love to linger on but they are busy getting lost or hiding or trying to climb into where the bones are rather than staying on the right side of the bars. Other than that it was fabulous! Peter of course walked away wanting to buy some little dinosaur toys, completely forgetting that he just barely received some at home; but all in all he had fun. I think his other favorite present was the football Granny Gray gave him with the hoodie. He went right out and just started playing by himself. He has his own football rules you know and sometimes other people just get in his way. It was a fun time.

A quick note on the Haley girl.... Haley is still awesome and cute and we all love her tons. At 4 months she is 15 lbs. and 25 inches long. Beautiful hair and adoring brothers.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Clapping on the Lights

I've told Dad about this, but we finally go this on video. Our front room light is on a Clapper because it has a floor switch to turn it on (and said switch is located behind the couch). Clappers are great and all, but they are often tripped on or off accidentally by flip-flops flapping down the stairs, guns in movies, or in this case, laughter.

Whenever the light goes off, Rachel drops whatever she's doing and tries to clap the light on just as she's seen us do.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Murder at the Pinewood Derby

Doesn't the title to this post remind you of an old Hardy Boys, or Nancy Drew, or Boxcar Children mystery novella? Fine, me either, but it was fun to write!

"I want a design that will go fast!" This is Jonah's response when I asked him to design his first pinewood derby car. Well, leave it to Dad of course, to put things off until the last minute. I advised him that the design couldn't be too complicated, since we only had a couple of days until the derby. Never mind that I had been asking him to do the design for a month. Of course I told him that it doesn't matter who wins, it's all in fun!

I call Jonah's...the Golden Doorstop.

I don't remember what he called it; the Golden Bullet? the Golden Rocket? The Golden Wedge? It looked better without the weights attached.

Jonathan's is the Silver Speedbump.

I can't remember the name he gave his, either. He designed his own too. He wanted it flat, with a bump in the middle.

Unfortunately, since Jon-Jon technically isn't a cub scout until March, he wasn't allowed to race with the other cubs. He did race in the open heats (free-for-all) after the cubs were done.

Jonah's did pretty well. We decided to have two wards participate since the rental cost of the track is so high. Jonah ran 1st in every heat he raced, but his overall time placed him 5th (out of 25-30?). The funny thing is there was a cub whose car weighed in at less than 3 oz (max weight is 5 oz), so I gave him the weights I was going to put on Jon-Jon's car, and the cub ended up beating Jonah's overall time, though they never ended up racing each other in an actual heat. I think the kid ended up in 2nd place. He kept having to retape the weights on every couple of heats or so.

(Jonah at weigh-in. The weights weren't yet attached. Did I already mention procrastinating 'til the last minute?)

Even without the weight, Jon-Jon's car beat a lot of others in the open heats, though weighing only 2 oz. Now, I have to pause here, and declare that I am NOT one of those dads who pours all this money into the cars, and squirts graphite powder onto the axles between every heat. (Yes, the cars that won all had that kind of attention lavished upon them.) (Oh all right. So I am honest enough with myself to admit that if I had known we could, I would have done that too. The graphite powder between heats, not the crazy money.)

I remember making my first and only Pinewood Derby car as a cub scout. I designed it myself, carved it with a cub scout knife myself, and painted it myself. It was a KITT Car, from the eighties television show "Knight Rider" with David Hasslehoff. I asked my dad for help when I was done, putting on the wheels and weights. He drilled holes and countersunk fishing weights. It was cool. And amazingly enough, I won the cub scout division in my ward! Ok. TMI. This is about the boys, not me.

They both had a blast! I made them design their own cars, and even though I made the cuts on the bandsaw (kudos to you Dave!), they did all the sanding, and some of the painting. I would have made them do all the painting but it was the last night before the race, and after a couple of coats, it was way too late for them to stay up. Who am I kidding, it was way too late for me to stay up.

So are you bored with pics of small, wooden cars?, then get ready for this!
More pics of small, wooden cars!!!

No wonder he lost! It's crooked!


Saturday, February 5, 2011

Rachel Videos

Who knew Rachel was a Patriots fan?

Mindy taught Rachel to say "Doobey doobey doo", but she would only say it under her breath.

Rach's new favorite toy is Mindy's tape measure from work.