Saturday, August 31, 2013

Need a BIG Hole!

Today started off with a bang.  We got a call about 8:30 asking us if we were coming to clean the church.  I remember seeing Mike's name in the bulletin last Sunday and that he was in charge.  We took the program home to write it on the calendar, but by the time we got home from church we completely forgot.  I mean completely!  Sometimes when I forget things I remember up until that day and then just space it. This wasn't the same.  Mike was so incredibly embarrassed!  It could have turned out worse though.  We were lucky enough to catch Becky right as she was leaving.  She gave us a key to the church and Mike was down there within a few minutes of being called.  I brought the kids about ten minutes later.  We worked for two hours.  It was only us and on the list.  Sister Perry said she has lived here twenty years and didn't recognize any of the names.  Anyway, we got it done.  We took the kids to yogurt afterwards and Mike took a four hour nap.  Mike said it wasn't so much he was tired, he just wanted to crawl into a hole.

John and my dad went to the Shakespeare Festival down in Cedar City to see Twelve Angry Men.  That gave Cassie and I lots of time to hang out!  Cassie was able to get a great deal on new tires.  I met her at the store with Trevor and we went to lunch.  We came home to find Mallory asleep on the rectangle thing.  So cute!  She was half asleep half awake. I asked her if she needed to go potty.  She said yes.  We were walking to the bathroom and she said, "I'm very, very tired."  Then I noticed she was wet.  She said, "I'm wet but I didn't want to tell that boy because he would be so sad."  Haha!  Mallory is such a crack-up!  Too bad she was wide awake after I changed her clothes.  
Mallory

Friday, August 30, 2013

Family

Once the kids were all safely dropped off at their schools I headed down to my dad's house.  Matt met us there too.  John, Matt and I played a couple of games of Dominion.  It was a fun little activity in the middle of the day.  Later, Bubs and his family, John and his family and Matt came over for a bit.  It was an impromptu get together.  So fun to have John and his family here!  (Sure wish we had a pool to swim in!)
Mallory and Stockton
 Jorja, Preston, John & Mallory
 Trevor
 Mallory, Jorja, Preston, Stockton
I went down to my dad's house to play Dominion with John, Matt and their friends (Pace and Bryan).  I am on a horrible Dominion losing streak.  It is really quite sad.  What isn't sad is my mystery flavor Dum-Dum.  Now that gave me a good surprise!
Sucker-face Stockton

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Look Who's Here!

It's Mallory!  John, Cassie and Trevor came with her.  John and Cassie took three days to drive here from Ohio.  On Wednesday they will leave for Oregon where John will start his new job.  I tried to time it so I would get to my dad's house a few minutes before they showed up.  I was late.  I got there a few minutes after they showed up.  John was laughing, "We beat you from Ohio!"  Yep.  Sure did.

Mallory was a bundle of energy.  Who can blame her after three days in the car?  She was cute as she ran from one thing to the other.  Trevor is funny.  He is like a cooked noodle.  He loves to walk when he holds onto John's hand.  (One hand NOT two.)  He is just very noodle like when he walks.  It is so cute!  John said Trevor has never crawled, apparently he wants to skip that step.
Mallory
 Mallory carried this chair up on the tramp by herself.
 Not sure what her objective is.
I'm so excited to have John and his family here over the next few days! I wish they were staying at my house, but my dad will have fun with them over there.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Drivers Ed is Over!

Malone was back this morning.  Jorja and Preston really wanted me to walk to the bus stop with him.  As we got there a girl came up to us and said, "Malone!  That's my dog!"  I told her she must be our backyard neighbor and that I would take the dog to her house.  When I got to Malone's house, his owner answered the door.  She was dressed up for work and pretty embarrassed.  She said she didn't know what to do and that maybe they would need to give Malone away.  I felt bad about that. I told her that it usually isn't a big deal, but we might have workers out in our yard.  She said she would put Malone in his kennel.  I know she asked her son to do it, he is 18 and goes to school at the U.  Anyway, as I was walking away I heard him tell his mom he would be late for school.  I walked back to my house and as I was walking up my driveway, what do I see?  MALONE!  He was back in our yard looking at me like he wanted me to take him on a walk.  I couldn't believe it! Whatever.  I decided I would go inside and not deal with him.  Really, what was I to do?

Maysen stayed after school today to do another road drive.  She had two road drives to finish from her summer school drivers ed.  After she finished the canyon portion, her instructor asked her if she would like to take her drivers test.  She did and she PASSED!  Yay!  Now, all she has to do is complete her 40 hours of driving with us and wait until she turns 16.  My niece, Erica, told me that if you take Drivers Ed at the school they will give you the tests and you won't have to take another one at the license place.  I didn't believe her.  She insisted it was true. Well, it looks like Erica is right.  That is great news for Maysen. Maysen is thrilled to be done!  Mike and I are so glad she is finished. Maysen has no desire to get a drivers license.  This was our idea.  Even if she never drives anywhere, I want her to have a license.  I also don't want her to be embarrassed later in life that she doesn't have a drivers license.  Even though it wasn't fun to take the class in the summer, I am glad she did it.  If not, she would be taking it now; and then Careers. Maysen would hate it.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Mystery Solved

Malone is back.  All day.  This morning I got a rope threaded through his collar and took him back to his owner.  She said she would put him in his kennel while she was gone at work.  The kids were disappointed that Malone was home when they came back from school.  They shouldn't have been, because he was back!  Mike had nailed the loose board, so we weren't sure how he was getting in our yard.  We couldn't find another entrance.
Malone, Jorja, Preston
 Malone and Jorja
 Malone and Preston
 Jorja, Malone and Preston
We did find out how Malone is getting in our yard.  I happened to get a picture of him leaving!
video
Yep!  He jumps right over the fence.  I'm not sure how to solve this problem!  Jorja and Preston both wanted to try, they are not nearly as capable as Malone.
video

Monday, August 26, 2013

Best First Day of School Picture Ever

My neighbor put this picture up on instagram.  I can't stop laughing!
Mike and I went to a Japanese restaurant with Jorja and Preston to celebrate Mike passing his big test.  We were going to go on Saturday, but Jorja started feeling a little sick.  We knew the younger two would love it!  Maysen and Stockton were happy staying home and eating pizza.  Both Jorja and Preston were good eaters.  I think they had a great time.  Preston loved dipping his food in the sauce.  He was pretending he was cooking the food.  He kept asking us if we would like him to cook some food.

We came back home to find Malone in our yard.  He is our backyard neighbors dog.  He was also in our yard on Saturday.  I borrowed a leash from a neighbor and Jorja, Preston and I walked him home. Except Malone is now huge and pulled me quite a bit.  One time I did a face plant.  I think I twisted my ankle.  Maybe I just rolled it.  Whatever I did, it hurts.  The kids were in heaven though. 

I dropped off the leash and talked to Autumn and Kristen for awhile.  I have never really talked to Kristen before.  She is about my age, and seems a lot like Jorja.  They let Jorja hold their cat, Mr. Round.  Kristen told Jorja how she could get free frogs.  She talked to her about how they are looking for people to study this certain species of frog in Utah. Jorja was really interested in that!  Kristen worked with dolphins for a long time.  She also bred crickets.  Jorja found her fascinating!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Lemonade

Poor Jorja was sick today.  She started feeling yucky last night.  She missed church today.  Mike and I went and checked on her after sacrament meeting.  She spent most of the day reading Harry Potter 4. She had one more chapter left, but I wouldn't let her finish.  It will still be there in the morning.

Bubs and Ange came over today.  The water was turned off at their house, and about seventy other houses in their neighborhood.  They thought the water was going to be off until tomorrow, but it came back on around six.  They were all prepared to take baths here.  I think they were very relieved to bathe at home.

I made the (healthy) kids go to our ward lemonade social.  It is the last one of the summer.  I gave each of them a goal to talk to three people. Mike got his done the first three minutes we were there and was ready to leave.  Maysen had a conversation with Melissa about having a conversation.  I guess they decided what they would tell people they were talking about in case anybody asked.  It was silly.  I can't even remember what they decided, I just remember laughing at Maysen when she told me.

Stockton wanted to stay later to jump on the trampoline.  Mike got some cute pictures of Maysen walking home with Preston.  I love my family!
Maysen and Preston

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Bye-Bye Training Wheels!

At the beginning of summer I had Maysen pick a race that we could run together.  I did not realize that she would find a 1.5 mile walk!  She knows how to beat the system.  Anyway, our walk to "Save the Wolves" was today.  It was up by the University of Utah (Shoreline Trail).  The weather was perfect and I had a great time with Maysen.  She was such a good sport.
Maysen
 Maysen and Stephanie
This afternoon Maysen and I went to pick up Mike from the airport.  I made Maysen drive both ways.  She was not happy about that. Grumble, grumble, grumble.  So glad to have Mike home!  Especially since this trip was a huge success!

Mike and I gave Preston the goal of learning to ride his bike without training wheels this summer.  He has not wanted to try.  Not even a little bit.  Now that summer is over, he decided to go for it.  Mike, Preston and Jorja went to the church parking lot.  I came down about ten minutes later and was shocked to see Preston riding his bike!  I did not think he would figure it out that quick.  He was so happy!  The only problem he seems to have is that he talks so much.  He keeps getting distracted by his own conversation that he almost crashes.  I love him.
Preston!  
Jorja, Preston and Mike
video

Friday, August 23, 2013

Red Hat Certified Architect

You have no idea how cool/amazing/incredibly hard this actually is!
Yay!  Mike passed!  He was so happy!  It is going to make the plane ride home tomorrow pretty great.  Tonight he is hanging out with his friend Bill who lives in West Virginia.  Bill is driving him to the airport at five in the morning.  Now that's a pretty nice friend!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

On the Ball

Mike and I dropped Maysen and Stockton off at school and then headed to the airport.  Jorja and Preston got out the door themselves this morning.  Mike is headed to Virginia to take his super hard test.  He has been studying a lot, but it quite a bit nervous.  It will be great when this stress is lifted off of his shoulders!

When I came back from the airport I saw this on my computer.  The kids were supposed to bring emergency bags to school in case of an earthquake.  I have been procrastinating because that is what I do, and because the paper said it wasn't due until September.  Jorja's note said, "I finished the emergency bag, it has everything in it I need.  In the bag is the red paper.  Will you fill it out please?  Thank you, Jorja" Awesome!  I'm going to get her to put together Preston's bag too!  I wish I was as on the ball as she is.
 Preston's Chinese numbers 6-10
I had to throw a picture of Preston' s work because I think it is stinkin' adorable!  This is going to be a great year!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Getting Lights

Preston came home with his first Chinese work.  I think it is so adorable!  He was practicing writing the numbers one through five. Five is his favorite.  I keep trying to say the number one, but I fail miserable and he keeps correcting me.  I love it!
Preston's first Chinese work
In other random news, Mike doesn't believe people.  Haha!  We have been working with the pool guy for forever now.  We were hoping to get a light under the diving board, we could see where there had been a light at one time.  There was also a light in the shallow end.  After working on our pool we were told that we couldn't have a light.  The something had collapsed or was too thin or blah, blah, blah. Whatever. Anyway, on Mike's way home from work he stopped at Home Depot and bought some 100 foot hollow wire threading tool. Who knows, he loves buying tools.  Anyway, Mike rigged up something where I could hang under the diving board.  (Dropping down there was a bit scary, my legs swung all the way up on the other side of the diving board!  I managed to get down there without hurting myself - which is saying a lot because I am very good at hurting myself!)  Well, it took us about five minutes to get the thing threaded through.  Which means that they will be able to get the wires through, which means we will get a light in our pool!  Too bad we didn't try this before they worked on our wall yesterday.  I wonder if we could have gotten that to work too?  Mike sent the pool guy a text with the pictures of where the wires came out.  He said, "I bought this at Home Depot, took about five minutes to thread it through, now can I have my light?"  The guy called Mike back so fast! He was pretty embarrassed - but he should be!  He said his guys told him it couldn't be done and he believed them.  Mike said he is tempted to give them a bill charging them for double price of the tool.  Turns out they had to rent a jackhammer for the day.  Our cost is double the renting cost.  Don't worry, other pool guys triple the cost.  Meanwhile I'm thinking, "What kind of a pool guy doesn't have his own jackhammer?"  Plus, if they would have let us know, we could have rented it.  Then we wouldn't have had to pay for the guys to drive down there and rent it as well.  I guess that way they wouldn't make as much money.  Ridiculous!

Well, long story short . . . Mike is awesome.  I'm glad he knows enough to know the workers were wrong.  We are really going to enjoy our light!  That is, if this pool ever gets finished!
Stephanie
 Jorja clowning around

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

My Baby is in First Grade!

I have to admit, I have not been looking forward to this day - at all! Today was my first full day with all of my kids in school.  Luckily Lincoln, Ella, Abbs and Millie came and played with me for a few hours while their mom and dad went to the temple.
Preston
 Preston - first grade
I also had several pool workers to keep me company.  They were here all day and worked on this wall.  I hope this turns into an awesome pool when they are done!
Maysen was sick when she got home from school.  She had a pretty high temperature.  We were able to get it under control by bedtime luckily.  Preston had a great day and keeps telling me that he loves school!  That makes me so happy!  If only his brother felt the same way.

For Young Womens' we had a combined pool party/BBQ activity - at our neighbors pool, not ours.  My dad took me to Costco this morning to get a few things for it.  That was fun.  Stockton really wanted me to make 'brownie cake'.  That is what he calls it.  I call it 'butter cake' for obvious reasons.  I did get it done and it was a hit.  Maysen missed this activity, she was so disappointed.  Haha!  I think she was secretly relieved to be sick.  Just kidding, she really didn't feel well.  

Monday, August 19, 2013

10th, 8th, 5th

Today was the official first day of school.  Except for Preston.  He doesn't start until tomorrow.  This year is going to be a crazy year trying to keep track of what kid is supposed to go where, but we'll survive!
Stockton
 Maysen & Stockton
 Jorja, Maysen, Stockton
 Jorja - 5th grade, Maysen - 10th grade, Stockton - 8th grade
 Jorja
 Jorja with her new backpack & lunchbox
 Stephanie with the flower Jorja made me
Preston and I spent the entire day together.  It was awesome!  This was our last alone day until high school.  Well, I'm sure won't be that long... We decided to play Dominion until it was time to go to school for a first grade orientation.  I was really impressed with his teachers.  I am so excited for this year!  Preston and I had to leave early in order to get Stockton and Joshua from middle school.  We dropped them off and then went to Kneaders.  Preston loves Kneaders, which makes me happy - although they didn't have pumpkin bread.  Soon Preston, soon.
Stephanie and Preston
We left Kneaders to pick up the boys at high school and drop them back off at middle school.  Then Preston and I went to Planet Play, except it wasn't there.  Apparently it went out of business.  The new place is called All Star, but they don't accept our passes.  We decided to pay for one game of laser tag anyway.  It was just Preston and I.  We had a great time!  Preston won 4,100 to 3,300.  He was so proud!

After school I took Jorja to get a haircut.  A little backwards I know, but she looks pretty darn cute.  We just got a trim, but it needed to be done!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Number 66

Today would have been my mom's 66th birthday.  That is how old Mike's mom was when she died.  It would have been amazing to have her these additional seventeen years, but I would still have been heartbroken if she died now.  Guess you always want your mom. Anyway, Jorja made cake batter rice krispie treats to celebrate.  We stopped by her grave on our way to a fireside.
Stephanie
I had in my mind a cute picture of us by her grave.  It didn't work that way.  This is the best we got.
Stockton, Jorja, Stephanie, Maysen, Preston
I was thinking we could get an above shot of just our heads around my mom's grave.  I don't know how to explain it, which is why Mike could not figure out what I was talking about.  Anyway, we ended up looking like a bunch of dead bodies . . . at a graveyard . . . oh well.
Preston, Maysen, Stephanie, Jorja, Stockton
The fireside we went to was great.  Elder Rasband spoke.  He has lived in this stake for thirty plus years and is now moving to Salt Lake.  Mike and I actually went to school with his daughter.  Elder Evans was there as well.  They were talking about the missionary program.  Something like 70,000 missionaries now with 30% being sister missionaries.  I think I got the numbers right, but I don't want to take the time to double check.

Mike, Matt and Bubs worked on the pool shed while I was gone.  This is what they got done.  It is a lot bigger than I thought it would be.  Should be awesome.