They're growing up!

Four weeks have passed since school started.  You might think I would be in my groove by now, being that all four kids are in school and I get my days to do what I want.  Buy I'm in no groove.  Unless it's the "fly by the seat of my pants" groove.  But I wouldn't have it any other way.  I'm lucky enough to be a stay-at-home mom, and get to chase my kids all over the place to various activities.  Volleyball, Cub Scouts, PTO, Relief Society, piano lessons, activity days, and in just over a month we'll be adding YOUNG WOMEN to that list!!!  So since it's been over a year and a half since my last post, I thought I'd re-introduce you to our kids!

Bailey -
She's eleven.  Going on fourteen.  She loves, loves, loves volleyball.  She's a darn good student too.  Loves reading, hates math.  Enjoys her Spanish class.  Likes boys, although she won't indicate which one she's got her eye on particularly.  I could probably figure it out.  She loves to bake.  Not so much dinner, but the goodies like cookies and brownies.  She's very helpful, and loves babies!  She's a pretty rockin' babysitter!

Sariah -
She's ten.  Also going on fourteen.  And that's not funny!  She also loves, loves, loves volleyball.  She wants to try gymnastics.  And soccer.  And karate.  She's a good student and really speaks up when she doesn't "get" something.  She's SUPER boy crazy!  And she's always more than willing to spill on her latest crush.  I don't even have to ask! She's got an amazing voice!  And some great rhythm. She is super helpful in the kitchen.  She likes to cook, specifically dinner.  I've got it made!

Ryan -
He's nine.  And he's happy to be that, no hurry to grow up which is just how I like it! He's a technology buff.  And he likes science.  He's very polite and always opens the door for his teacher at school.  He is very sensitive, no football or wrestling here....we tried that.  It's too rough he we're trying out some volleyball.  He tried zumbatomic...and even though he was the only boy he LOVED it!  He's quite the piano student...his teacher says he has natural talent.  He loves to read and he loves school.  And he loves cub scouts!

Dallin -
He's our little five year old whiz!  Kindergarten is his favorite place to be other than on his bike.   He's starting to read and spell words out on his own.  He's the shortest KID in his class, it's adorable!  He's very protective of his friends.  And his siblings.  School has brought him out of his shell.  He's our little outdoorsman.  Always wanting to go camping, fishing, ride motorcycles.  He took me for a bike ride yesterday down the canal bank through weeds taller than him!  He's very determined!  Oh....and he LOVES doughnuts!

Highlights of 2010....a little late

I'm putting this one first because it's been a HUGE major deal. Dallin FINALLY decided to try out the potty. Not his little training get it dirty would be just unheard or! But he's finally decided that he can pee and poo in the toilet like a big boy. We've tried for over a year and he finally got it. The reward: a Buzz Lightyear action toy. Well worth it!

We bought another new 4wheeler, so any chance Chris gets he's out pulling the kids on tubes or going for chilly rides in the snow.

Ryan had a sleep test done in the hospital in Pueblo, after which his doctor decided it would be a good idea to have his tonsils and adenoids removed. They did that in April, and Ryan is a new kids now! He has started filling out and gaining weight and looks so much better.

Bailey finished her 2nd year in 4H and Sariah finished her 1st. They both worked really hard and did awesome at the Tri-County Fair in August, Sariah bringing home 1st place and Bailey 3rd place.

We had a very successful tomato garden this year...our first since moving to Colorado. However, we found 6 of these nasty giant worms....known as Tomato Horn Worms. The kids were so excited to take them to school for show and tell. YUCK!

We had a mini high school reunion. Kelly (left) and I actually live 10 minutes from each other and serve in the Relief Society together, but Crystal (center) lives in New Jersey, so it's not often that the three of us get together and reminisce. The kids had a blast too, but I feel aged just looking at my big kids next to their little ones.

Ryan FINALLY decided to try riding his bike without training wheels, which was a pre-requisite to getting to try the motorcycle. He was so excited to finally be able to get on the motorcycle and go, go, go!

My sister (Connie) and her hubby went to the temple in September to be sealed to the fourth of their adopted kids, and we were able to be there. This picture has 13 of my parents 16 grandkids. Taking a picture in front of the font has sort of become tradition too.

And I'm BRACE FREE! Yay!

The Boxcar Children

We were lucky to have beautiful weather again this Saturday, so I drug the kids out for some pictures. They were hatin' life, that is, until we found this old boxcar/traincar. It's really old and dirty but also really cool, so we HAD to take some pictures by it. I love their serious faces! We could really pull off one of those old western pictures. So they told me when we got back in the car that they are the Boxcar Children. We've read several of the series of books, and it made me laugh when they added: "but we live in a house and only take pictures by the boxcar." Aw, kids!

This too, shall pass.

It all started....well we don't know exactly when. Just two weeks ago we noticed that our wood floor was showing signs of moisture. We couldn't figure out where it was coming from....we hadn't seen any water anywhere. Turns out the line that connects to our fridge for the ice maker had been leaking underneath the hardwood. For quite some time. The floor was starting to cup (or warp). A restoration company came out a few days later and set up some mats and fans that would supposedly suck the water out of the floor. And it worked for about 3 days.

In the meantime, our washing machine died. We paid a repairman $50.00 for ten minutes and "you need a new washer." Ugh. So a week ago we took of and ran to Pueblo for a new washer and dryer. (Our dryer had been on it's way out for some time, so it seemed like a good time to upgrade.) For a moment we forgot about the kitchen floor and were mesmerized with the quiet new set. Amazing how little water they use...and they sing little jingles!!!
Our fun was short-lived, as two days after that we find out that our oven doesn't heat. It doesn't go higher than 140 degrees. That is also the day the floor guys returned to tear out the floor to find out what's going on. Turns out the fridge has been leaking WAY longer than we had anticipated, and the water damage is WAY worse than originally thought. When they were tearing out the wood floor where the fridge was, they ended up tearing up extra, and luckily, finding that our dishwasher has also been leaking. For awhile! So out that came, and they told us we need a new one. Out came cabinets. And the smell was horrendous! I still can't believe that we couldn't smell that before they took the floor up.

Then Saturday came. Christopher went to the mountains to ride 4wheelers. The floor guys weren't coming, so I had a full day planned of things I wanted to get done. Which included cleaning out the car and washing it and getting the garage all cleaned up so I could park my sparkling car inside. Right. I got it done. But they had a 4wheeling accident. And now, long story short, we have an extra 4wheeler in our garage, and my car IS NOT parked there!!! It's OK though, I'm glad Matt is OK. That's more important anyway than a sparkling car with a place to park inside.

Which brings us to today. I was headed out to the bus stop. The wind was blowing like crazy....haven't seen wind like this in awhile. The dust was so bad in places that the visibility was nearly zero. Suddenly Dallin starts squealing "need to do potty!" and when he's squealing he means like RIGHT NOW! So I hurried and pulled off the road, opened the car door, and WHAM! the wind takes the door and bends it backward. Forget the toddler that needs to go potty. I spent the next five minutes trying to get the car door closed. Then open so I can get back in. Speed over to the bus stop, get the door open again and pull the now screaming toddler out to go potty!

I'm thinking....could anything else go wrong???!!!
and if you guessed yes, then you're right.
We get home from Volleyball, which was awesome, by the way, to find that the wind has picked up the umbrella on our patio set, and in the process has shattered the glass top to the table. Glass everywhere. I'm surprised the trampoline is still there!
Now seriously, what else could go wrong?!

But tonight, as I stood *washing the dishes by hand* and thinking about it all, I reminded myself that at least we're all healthy and functioning. This will pass.....eventually....hopefully. And life will go on. I'm trying to see the positive side in this otherwise I may go crazy!

Or this noisy contraption is going to drive me there! 24/7 of air purifying love. It's kinda nice when the kids are home, I can't hear them arguing and therefore don't feel so stressed about it. Not all bad :)


Christopher, Ryan and Dallin have found a new favorite hobby. It's more Dallin's than Ryan's, who is more of a Wii player and computer guy. But they got away a couple of weeks ago to go fishing. Christopher took Ryan up to Lost Trail Campground and they camped one night and fished the next morning until Ryan (probably Christopher) wanted to come home. They hadn't even unloaded, and Dallin was begging to go fishing. So Christopher piled him in the truck and away they went up to Rock Creek. Now if they could just CATCH something!

Oh, yeah. And I let Ryan sport a mohawk for the weekend. Cool guy!

O What do you do in the summertime?

Us? Well we spend at least one night in the emergency room every summer! And the lucky guy this year is Ryan. It was 8:30 Saturday night, I was ready to hop in the shower, Chris was asleep, and the kids were watching a movie. A little battle broke out between Dallin and Ryan over a remote control, Dallin threw it at Ryan and it hit him in the back of his head, splitting it open an inch. After 3 hours and 20 minutes in the waiting room, we got home at 1:00 AM with three STAPLES in the back of Ryan's head. UUUGGGHHH!!!

It was almost more than my stomach could handle! Good thing Ryan is such a tough kid!

Go Girls!

Last week was the Tri-County Fair in Monte Vista. Our girls have been working for months now with their lambs, and were entered in the Market Sheep Division. The entire week was busy, washing the lambs, shearing them, and washing them again. It was a blast!

The little kids weren't much help as far as getting the lambs ready, but they were easily entertained. This is a platform the we put the lambs on to shear them. We just put their heads in the brace and hold them there with the chain. So Dallin and all the other little kids had a blast pretending they were sheep and taking turns shearing one another!

Bailey, Sariah, Angel and Eric were all in the same class. Actually, both of Sariah's lambs were in this class, so we asked another girl to show her other lamb. She is the one in the back with the black and purple plaid shirt on. The judge has them circle the ring a few times and hold their lambs, then when he's ready he lines them up in order from 1st place to last place.

This was soooo exciting! He started lining them up......1st: Sariah, 2nd: Angel, 3rd: Bailey....we could hardly contain our excitement outside the ring!!!

Bailey with her 3rd place ribbon and her lamb "Rocky Bulwinkle."

Sariah with her 1st place ribbons and her lamb "Steamer."

After all the classes have been judged, all first place winners re-enter the ring to compete for Grand Champion and Reserve Grand Champion. It was exciting and nerve-racking all at the same time. Sariah looked so tiny out there with all those big kids....and big sheep!
The judge said she is so fun to watch. Hmmmm.

And the final show is the Pee-Wee showing where little kids get to enter the ring and be next to those big animals. Dallin held the halter and Sariah helped him lead Steamer around the ring. He got a white ribbon too!
***And where was Ryan you ask? He spent most of the week hanging out at Chris's office watching movies, but the time he actually spent at the fair he spent playing out in the grandstands with a group of little kids. I love fair!