Wednesday, January 28, 2015

I Am Doing It

Lately I have been feeling that I sit down to the computer a dozen times a day for no good reason.  I am drawn to its shiny connectivity, and find myself checking email far more often than there is anything worth reading.  I have even been frustrated with Facebook's lack of new content.  I know. That's very, very sad.

It's not like I have nothing to do around here.  I've been telling myself for months and years, really, that I'm far too busy to do family history.  But the dead end in  my family tree has become less and less acceptable since Ezra turned twelve and inherited responsibility for it.  (The brethren really knew what they were doing when they assigned family history to the youth--those of us slow to heed the call in general conference will eventually give in to our own children.  I mean, really, who say no to a cute kid asking for help with family history?)  So today I finally sat down to see what I could do.  I had to call the help desk, but by the end of the twenty-minute call, I was well on my way.  In another five or ten minutes, I had printed up my very first Family Ordinance Request.  Ezra, excited by my success, did a little more work on one of my lines, and printed his own request, and then tried his hand at indexing.  

I was not prepared for the elation I've felt all day.  The brethren have taught us that the internet can be a colossal waste of time--or--help us hasten the work.  Turns out, hastening the work is way more fun than wasting time colossally.  

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Small Happenings

TJ built these beautiful shelves in the girls' room, so that the boys could have their chest of drawers.  He is always building and fixing things around here.  He must save us thousands of dollars a year with all his jury-rigging.  

Georgia painted this beautiful watercolor as a gift when Ezra was born.  After awhile the frame wore out, and I tucked it away in a scrapbook.  This week it found its perfect home on my bookcase.

These are Taylor's ID cards from the last eight years of school.  Such a cutie pie!

The kids discovered toy soldiers today, and have been playing with them nonstop.  Paul really wanted me to take this picture. 

We had friends cancel dinner at the last minute, so the Baileys did us a favor and came over instead.  Next time someone bails, we'll call our other best friends, the Monnetts!  I just delight in the look of my table full of food and surrounded by people I love.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Naomi's and Eden's Birthday

Naomi chose to celebrate her ninth birthday with the family this year, so she got a big birthday present from TJ and I: polymer clay and tools of her own.  For her breakfast in bed, she got scrambled eggs with bacon, a peanut butter smoothie, and waffles with apricot jam.  She spent most of her day sculpting, but she did go to her piano lesson and got spoiled by her teacher, too.  That night we had a combined birthday party with Eden.  Naomi had sculpted Eden a rose for her birthday present, and Eden had painted Naomi a picture.  It was a pretty simple party since we were planning on going sledding in a few days on the girls' request.

I took the kids shopping because the Christmas money Grandma and Grandpa gave them was burning holes in their pockets!  Isaiah got glasses, Paul got a carpenter set, and Naomi got a hoodie.  Eliza and Ezra put their money together to get a sweet remote control car.  I'm saving mine for a Brian Regan show in the spring, and I think TJ's spending his on a new desk.

 The kids have come to associate Uncle Richard's visits with family stories until midnight, and always a great dessert.  Since our allergies have gotten so exasperating, Richard has taken to buying tons of fresh fruit for us, which makes kids and parents happy alike.
 Another scouting mission for the scouts, this one to Hell Hole.  
 The whole time we hiked, I exclaimed over the gorgeous aqua colored rocks all over the place.  I had never seen anything like it.  The kids didn't really seem to know what I was talking about, and when I finally took my sunglasses off, I noticed that these rocks were a lot more white than green.  I think a combination of the evening light and the constant exposure to red sandstone and my sunglasses fooled my eyes.  

New Year's Eve

The Monnett family always parties so hard the week of Christmas that we all say we don't want to celebrate New Year's Eve by the time it rolls around, but then we always do anyway, and have a great time, too.  This year my party was seriously threatened by Tana and Jaron's plans to go up north that day, and then even when they stayed, the whole family was worn out from putting in Georgia and Lance's wood floor all day long.  In the end, all the FOMOs came anyway and it may have been the best New Year's yet.  

Dad put on a fashion show of all his newly created outdoor gear, with the help of the kids.  My favorite part was Lawson playing emcee with a french/british accent.  

Then we played "Ducky, Ducky."  It was hilarious!  Isaiah has an uncanny ability to guess people by the sound of their voices!

I'm no good at candid photography, so I told everyone to laugh, and this is the picture I got.  Maybe I should try candid again.  We played Jaron and Tana's latest fav, "Coup."
Jaron looks like all the guys felt that night...they seriously spent like twelve hours straight at Georgia's house.  Heroes. 
And I kind of love this picture of me because of what was going on at the time.  I was telling my family that the previous day Eliza had come up to me while I was puzzling over something on the computer.  She said, "You look just like Papa right now."  And I said, "How do I look?"  And she furrowed her brow and stuck her lips out.  When I tried the expression on, I realized that I do make that face when I'm confused, just like Dad does!  I love that so much.  
We ended with toasts in my awesome collection of wine glasses.  Mormons are pathetic at toasting.  Next year everyone, I expect much better.  Practice during the year if you have to.  Alcohol may even help.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

The kids were asked if they could sing a special musical number in church on Sunday, so we've been practicing hard this week.  Paul was reluctant to practice with us, and I coaxed him,

"You don't want to be up in front of all those people on Sunday and not know the words to the song."

 His snappy rejoinder was,

"I don't want to be up there, at all."  

I guffawed in my sleeve and made him practice anyway.  I should punish him for taking after his irreverent, disrespectful dad.  But it's just so cute when he also takes after his witty, charming mom. 

Potty Talk

Newly-potty trained Isaiah (yay!) overflowed the toilet with too much paper (boo!)  Taking stock of the damage, I noticed lots of kids' clothes and shoes getting wet--nevertheless I kept my composure and remarked,

 "Well, I guess that could have been worse."

 I reached down to empty Paul's sneaker of any wetness, and out dropped about a cup of sand from our hike the night before.  My laugh came out like this:

 "BA, HA, HA, HA, HA!!!" 

Did the kids think I might finally be losing it?  I don't know.  At the moment I wasn't exactly sure. But there was just something so uproariously funny about my making potty water into mud, I couldn't help it.

Isaiah really has been a gem to potty-train.  The first few days were rough because he's the most stubborn person I've ever met.  But once he got with the program, things went a lot more smoothly. His insatiable appetite for snacks has definitely worked in my favor.  Since he gets a treat every time he goes, whenever he feels like a snack, all he has to do is go potty.  We started a week before the beginning of the new term of home school, and I had totally planned on continuing to remind him to use the bathroom  periodically throughout the day.  But the first day back at our studies was absolutely nuts, and I totally spaced potty training.  Isaiah didn't, though.  He came to me every hour or so and told me he needed to go, then did it.  He has only had an accident once in the four days since then.  I am super impressed!  Best of all, though: he's so happy right now.  Being able to go to Primary and learning how to go potty were equally important prerequisites for his big kid card.  He is all funny jokes and dimples and laughter these days.