"Life is change. Growth is optional. Choose wisely."

Saturday, June 28, 2014

The joys of June

I am almost consumed with the need to keep a record of our life, and to remember so many sweet and precious little things.  Today while leaving the gym, Weston found two pennies, which he was overwhelmingly excited about!  He couldn't wait to put them in his piggy bank to save for BYU and his mission.  I love how excited he is about learning to swim.  Today he sort of did a handstand.  I almost don't know what I am going to do when swim lessons are over on Friday...the kids have loved it so much!  Weston talks a lot about history. It is definitely his passion right now. 

Brighton has a new sippy that he just loves to drink out of.  Today I asked him if he wanted water or milk.  Though he doesn't really talk yet, he uttered  something that sounded very much like the word "beer!" It was so cute.  He has started to really like T.V. - cartoons and kid movies (although he would always rather be playing outside).  Tonight we watched "Enchanted" and HE was enchanted!  He is getting better at communicating, and is so absolutely adorable.  His smile just melts my heart.  

Sophie still changes her clothes a million times a day, makes up absurd excuses for anything she does wrong (like her dad), and is slightly obsessed with princesses and people falling in love and getting married.  And, since Jason is gone so much this time of year, she is really missing him.  I am thankful that she is so affectionate.  She is almost always in the mood to cuddle or be close to us.  Sometimes I worry about her having the desire to be obedient, but she also is so willing to help and serve.  She likes to be doing (unless TV is on that is)!

As far as my goals this summer, I have been frustrated with my seemingly dismal progress...although it has occurred to me that I have had some success so far in getting a few small projects done finally.  I think my dissatisfaction comes because I am not as focused as I would like to be with my goals and schedule.  Trying to create any kind of structure for myself is monumentally difficult!  However, there are some things we have kept on task with:
1. Studying scriptures every day with the kids
2. Making sure that the night time routine stays firm. 
3. Having Weston read to me for 15 minutes a day.
4. Reading to the kids.
5. Working out daily (for me, not the kids)
6. Teaching the kids something new that they would like to learn about.  Sometimes this ends up being all about Weston.  Sophie isn't as interested.  I haven't decided if I need to change this, or just let her frolic and play.  She is only 4, after all!
7. Keeping their rooms cleaned up.

There are so many other things I need to do, but at least we are on the right track of maintaining basic order. Well, at least I'd like to think so!
On to the fun stuff...I just love the silliness and creativity that blossoms in the summer when school is out! On Monday Weston decided to make some history displays in his room...

 Then he wrote a sign for the door saying that mean kids aren't allowed unless they pay $1000.  The sign also says that entry is free for nice kids...and that the display is cool (he said he wrote that to entice the "nice" kids to enter).  A few nights later after he lost his tooth, he wrote this note:

"to tooth fairy. Please look at my room and look at my display. From Weston. WPG"

One magical night I didn't have to exert any effort in getting the kids to bed...I think I went to get the baby down, and when I came out of the room there was silence.  I found Weston and Sophie cuddled and asleep!  Sophie didn't even wake up when I moved her to her bed. 
 Weston and Sophie are endlessly building forts...and trying to keep Brighton away from them lest he destroy them like the little human tornado that he is!  Here Weston is guarding the entrance. Also, you may notice something missing in his mouth.  He lost his 6th tooth on Sunday morning!  I knew it wouldn't be long once he told me he was going to "work" on it and spent over an hour in the bathroom!  That night the kids decided to sleep in their fort.  Sophie swears she SAW the tooth fairy that night.  I wondered if I should punish her for lying, but she is very convinced!  She gave us all a rather detailed description of what she looks like.  Maybe she dreamed about the tooth fairy?
 I think, however, that Brighton is actually beginning to appreciate the coolness of forts.  Now the kids let him in, and he doesn't destroy them...well, at least not every time!  Anyway, who can resist that cute smile?
 Cuddling on the couch is a new thing for Brighton.  He usually wants to be moving ALL of the time, but there are now occasional moments of relaxing, for which I am truly thankful!
 Speaking of quite, magical moments...the other evening it got quiet, which usually means the baby is up to something.  When I finally found him, Brighton was under the blanket in Weston's bed looking at a book!  I'm so glad he actually stayed put long enough for me to snap a little picture.

 Soon they were all jumping or dancing on the bed...

A couple of nights ago I told the kids we could watch a movie together since they had cleaned up their rooms so well and finished everything they had to do early enough.  Jason had passed out on the couch, as he often does this time of year, so the kids didn't have their usual spots to sit.  Brighton crawled up on the edge of the couch to be by daddy, and before it was even bed time, he was fast asleep on the couch! 
 For my birthday, Dad & Linda sent me a DVD of some home videos from the summer of 1989.  What a treasure!!  Me and the kids had SO much fun watching it! Something about childhood is so magical...I hope my kids feel the same way one day when they think about their "growing up"years.
 I was able to get a few great pics at swim lessons the other day...I guess they are out of order since the first few are of the kids after they got out of the water.  Their teacher gives them a popsicle and lets them jump on her trampoline for a few minutes when they're done each day.

Sophie getting ready to start...

Weston preparing for a sit-dive...
 I was hoping for a mid-action shot, but I was too late.  He was in the water before I knew it!

And of course, Sophie wants to do anything she sees Weston doing...
 I love this lady who teaches my kids how to swim!  She is awesome.  I am thankful to have found her. :)

 Sophie is still afraid to get her face wet! 
This was at the drive-in movie, where we went to see Maleficent...the kids were so excited to watch from the bed of the truck, but half way through the movie I realized they couldn't even hear the movie from up there!

One lovely morning, I was awakened by a baby with a gun (toy, of course)...
 And a sleepy, stretchy boy who was reading the Fearless Flyer from Trader Joe's. He really likes it, I finally realized, because it kind of looks like an old fashioned newspaper.

Three cute munchkins ready for a new summer day filled with fun! I figure if I ever get a picture of the three of them with their eyes open, smiling and looking at the camera all at the SAME TIME, it will be a miracle!

Sophie loves it when I take pictures of the back of her hair so she can see what it looks like.

And since Elsa wears a braid, braids are what she wants!  I love braids, too, but I'm not that great at them.  Maybe if I practice all summer I'll be good at it by the time school starts again.

 I love moments like this when I am reminded that Sophie is still a silly, playful little girl!  She spends most of the time acting so much older than her age...and sometimes I miss her littleness so much!

A couple of selfies with the kids...

Don't even ask why we own the movie Spaceballs! I had a vague recollection of it being funny when I was a kid, but quickly realized that not only is it completely un-funny (unless you are a teenager and it is 3 in the morning?), but that it is totally NOT kid appropriate.  Apparently the picture on the front of the movie is appealing, though - at least to Sophie, who carried it around for half the day trying to get me to let her watch it!  Uh, no.

Something else that we started doing this week is going to the YMCA every day so I can workout.  Let me just say that doing zumba after more than 2 years was a little rough, as were all of the other workouts I did!  How do these women (at least some of whom, I presume, have given birth) jump around like that?  Am I the only one that prefers NOT to jump since having children?  However, it has been GREAT working out again.  I really love it.  It is a great release, and I am happy to say that Brighton and Sophie love the kids play area.  Weston is a little bored, but kids have to learn at some point that life doesn't revolve around them, so I'm ok with him being bored for an hour every day. :)

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Summer has begun!

The first day of Summer vacay, we went to the park and splash pad down the street with some friends and had a great time. I didn't take any pictures that day, but the next day, Friday, we headed down to Henderson to meet up with the Abbotts at a really great park there. We always look forward to seeing the Abbott gang, and I am so thankful my kids love to visit them as much as I do. Rachelle and I have known each other for 17 years!! 

I shot quite a few pics of Brighton exploring the park.  The one place I did not get a picture of him playing was a particular water feature that he gravitated to again and again...this kid is ALWAYS on the's a wonder I get any pictures of him at all!  

Forever thing I have noticed about Brighton is that no matter how much something scares him, he does it over and over again.  I love the tenacity and courage, but I wish he were a *little* more cautious!

This kid is always pointing. He is forever excited about something new and pretty much never stops moving. 

Here are Weston and Flint having a great time together...

When we had been at the park long enough, we all went back to the Abbott's house to play/visit for awhile are Sophie and Savannah, who generously shared her nail polish...too bad she didn't have more colors to choose from (note sarcasm)!  Sophie and Savannah are both ALL girl...

Saturday morning I went to the annual Children's orchard sale where you stuff as many clothes as possible in a bag and pay $5 for it.  I always find great success at the sale, and this year was no exception.  I wish I would have taken a picture of all my loot.  I got 10 pairs of shorts, 10 shirts, 3 skirts, 2 perfect summer onesies, one pair of leggings, one pair of shoes, and one adorable little baby overalls all for $20!  I am pretty thrilled with the adorable clothes I was able to find, especially for Brighton.
That evening we went out to eat with some friends and had such a fun time.  I am so thankful to have had an entire week of fun for my birthday!
When Monday morning rolled around, I think we were all filled with the excitement of the first full week of vacation...Sophie put on this fun little get-up, which I thought was picture worthy.  Lately she has been extra focused on the concept of modesty.  In fact, on Saturday she was jumping around the house, boisterously  declaring, "I'm hottest, because I'm modest!!"  Of course, I'm pretty sure she had no idea what "hottest" actually  means in that context...and hopefully we can keep it that way for a while longer!

I think what has really made this first full week of summer feel officially like vacation is swimming lessons.  They are LOVING it! 
Sophie really does not like the water on her face though.  I'm hoping she'll get over that this year, since it is kind of hard to swim without getting your face wet.
Again pointing, Brighton really enjoys watching the kids in the pool...although he would much rather be IN the water with them.

And oh how exhausting it is to be out in the sun!  Yesterday Brighton fell asleep on Sophie's leg after we got home.
He really is a handsome little devil...
Running around the piano bench at full speed, I'm pretty sure I don't know how this picture even turned out! 
This munchkin is always on the move...
We are off to a great start!  I love having time to study scriptures in the morning with the kids, being able to sleep until the baby wakes up and just generally feeling that I am not on someone else's schedule. We have a lot to accomplish and learn this summer, but I am just thrilled to have the change and a little freedom!