Thursday, March 31, 2011

Breaking Up The Band

This is why I get migraines: (I love how part way through they have "creative differences")

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Deer in the Headlights

Eric turned 32 on Thursday. I can't believe we are "in" our 30's. I can't believe we were ever 17 and dating. Where has the time gone? What happened to my hips? Okay, so this shouldn't be about me and my aging phobia, so let's move on to what we did on Eric's big day.
Eric, of course, had work, but luckily (yeah right) our kids get up early and we had time to open presents before he had to go to work. The kids were "good helpers" by which I mean they brought gifts over to Eric and opened them in front of him.
Livi has gotten to that fun stage where she understands that bright colored packages mean she gets to rip them open and there are fun surprises inside. Unfortunately she hasn't grasped the idea that not all presents are for her.

He still had to go to work, which is a bummer but even the State of Nebraska doesn't give work off for employee birthdays (but Arbor Day? Really?) Eric got Megamind from Ethan so we popped that in and watched while we had a fun pizza dinner.
I had made cake balls a few weeks ago and Eric had enjoyed them so I got the Cake Pops book and tried to make them for his birthday.

This is what they were suppose to look like, courtesy of and this is how mine turned out.

Not too bad for a first try but they do look a little high...or scared...or manic. I should have practiced before doing them for a birthday. One problem with cake pops.....where to put a candle?

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Yes, that is your sheep I stole.

While I was gone the kids had a primary activity at Church. They were suppose to dress up as their favorite character from the scriptures. I got a call from Eric the night before because Ella was concerned that they didn't have costumes put together. I told Eric to just wrap them in fabric and call it good. This was the result:

I think he did a pretty good job.
Since there is, as my mom would point out, a lack of strong female characters in the BOM, Ella and Ethan both wanted to be Ammon since it is their favorite story. Ella eventually won and Ethan... well Ethan took Uncle James' recommendation and went as a one-armed Lamanite.
Livi was Livi. She was a pirate.

Meeting Autumn

I was lucky enough to spend the weekend driving back and forth from Nebraska to Utah. In between the long drives I did get to spend a few hours with family and be there for my only nieces blessing.

Andrew, Joy, Ebby and Autumn. Such a cute family

Autumn and her cousin, Jack, were blessed at the same time. Such cute babies!

It was a lot of fun. I got to spend some time with my family, go shopping, walk 1000 miles in IKEA, eat some great food, and also sneak in a little 'Angry Birds.'
James with Bailey, the dog I am going to steal as soon as they let down their guard.

It was hard to be away from my kids for so long, but I'm glad I went. The kids were glad I went too. The kids loved all the clothes I brought home for them and Livi was even cuddling her pile.
She immediately had to change clothes to a new outfit and started rummaging through my luggage hoping to find more.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Over Thinking Things

Saint Patrick's Day came without as much fanfare as Ella would like. The day before she asked me "Mom, what does The Leprechaun bring?"
Me: "What Leprechaun?"
Ella: "The one that comes at night on Saint Patrick's Day."
Me: ??????
Ella: "You know. Like the Easter Bunny and Santa. What does the Leprechaun bring me."
Me: "Um.....nothing."
Ella looking incredulous: ??????
Me: "Sorry, it's not that kind of holiday. Really, people just use this day as an excuse to celebrate being Irish and getting drunk."
Ella: ???? "What's 'drunk'?"
Me: "ARGH, how about we eat a salad or something and call it good?"
Ella: "Fine." Stomps away.

She was so excited about wearing green we she laid out all her clothes ahead the night before. She made sure her shoes, socks, shirt, and hair dooley had green on them. Livi got in on the action and put together her own green 'ensemble' (as we have to call it with my two girls).

Ethan was a little more analytical about the whole thing. He came up stairs that morning wearing absolutely NO green. I told him to go get some green on and he refused. He explained that the traditional color of St Patrick's day is actually blue so he was going to wear blue. I took one look at him and ordered him to get some green on. He then stomped downstairs. I could only imagine him trying to explain to all the kids pinching him as he walked the halls at school that "blue is really the traditional color," and that they should stop. Yeah, that would go over well.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Fit For A Princess

I thought I should finally post a few pictures of our work around the house. Both kid's rooms are mostly done. Ethan needs a few pieces of furniture (and a good picking-up) but Ella's was basically ready to be photographed. If you remember we started with this:

It was truly the scariest room in all of the house we looked at. The carpet was blue, dirty (cat urine and feces), and worn away in some parts. The window didn't seal at all, and there was scary blue paneling on only one wall. Well, we bought the house despite that room, and tried our best to make it work for Ella:

We put in a new large window so we now legally have a 5 bedroom home. Right before we put in the window I decided I couldn't live with the paneling on one wall, so I started pulling it down. Luckily (maybe) I did, because it turned out our sprinklers were leaking right down that wall and the wall, insulation, and paneling was covered in mold and water. So we fixed the sprinklers, gutted half the room to the studs, sealed the cinder blocks, put in new insulation, put up new drywall (which Eric had help with from our handyman)
and I mudded,

sanded, mudded, sanded, and mudded the wall again all by myself.
I sealed the new walls,

painted, and we put in new carpet. Ella picked out wall colors, bedding and helped arrange everything. I asked Ella her favorite part of the room and she said the canopy and chandelier over her bed.
I like the "Tribute to Aurora."

I had silver frames from my sister's wedding that I filled with various styles of Ella's favorite princess Aurora.

It's lower than I would have liked (like most the room), but I wanted her to be able to enjoy it, and she does!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

And The Nerdy Part Of Me Rejoices

For a long time now we have known that Ethan take more after my family than Eric's. He is not as athletically inclined as Eric's family, and he loves to read, draw, and make imaginary worlds, like my family. I had tried in the past to introduce Ethan to the world of Star Wars but about halfway through the movies he would loose interest. His interest has peaked lately since finding some kids books based on the cartoon, and having friends at school that LOVE it. He started playing a LEGO version video game and getting toys with his allowance.
yes, that is Boba and Jenga Fett holding an armless C3PO at gun point and getting him to jump off the kitchen counter.

During "the sickness" (as it shall now be known) we watched a lot of movies and I remembered I finally got Star Wars on Dvd a few years ago. I plopped it in the player and Ethan sat transfixed THE ENTIRE TIME.

I am so proud.

As a post script we made it through the first (second?) three, finishing with Return of the Jedi today after church. Ella even sat through that one (although she did start reading books until the Ewoks showed up).

My favorite Ella comment of the day: While Leah is in her slave bikini "Mom, she looks soooooooo pretty." Yes Ella, I think Daddy (and all men) would agree.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Dresses Dresses Everywhere

Hi world, I'm almost back to normal. After a *fabulous* kidney infection that laid me up for almost a week I am no longer crying on the couch and can update the blog. It's been a fun month, to say the least (or most, if you really think about it).
That last couple of weeks have been interesting (in a non-health way). Olivia, in an effort to out "girly" Ella decided she would no longer wear anything other than dresses. This wouldn't be a big deal but we do live in Nebraska and it is winter, so we've had to be a little creative. We've put jeans, leggings, and long sleeve shirts under the dresses, and after having to wash her good Sunday dresses a couple of times I decided to give in and buy a few more play dresses that are easier to take care of. I thought I wouldn't have to buy a ton of clothes for Livi because Ella had such cute clothes, but Ella's only stipulation was that all clothes must be PINK. Livi has decided that all colors are fine as long as there is fluff and skirts involved. Great... Here are a couple of pictures from the last few weeks:

There are a couple of new play dresses I somehow managed not to photograph, but I'm sure they'll show up here eventually since she shows no sign of giving this up.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Dancing Queen...s (to be said like Keanu Reeve...s)

I'm a little loopy from medicine but I wanted to post these videos for grandmas real quick. Thursday Ella had "parent watch day." Eric was in Lincoln arguing before the State Supreme Court so I "got" to take Livi and Ethan with me. Ethan grumped the whole time about not wanting to be there, but Livi had the exact opposite reaction, it was all I could do to keep her off of the dance floor.
Here is Ella tap dancing:

And here is Livi tap dancing:

Here is Livi (In the mirror) copying what she had seen the big girls do:

Here is part of Ella's big ballet dance they are doing for the recital in June, and Livi doing her own interpretive dance on the sidelines (when she's not directly in front of the camera you can see her in the mirror):

I don't know who I feel sorrier for, for the future. Ella, who will always have a charming, blond, angelic sister (not that I have any experience with that:) ) right on her heels wanting to do everything she does; or Livi having the beautiful, elegant, older sister who is competent at everything she does. Or me, who is going to have to be beating off boys with a stick.

Thursday, March 3, 2011


While I gave Ella a bath the other night Eric, Ethan and Livi played a little Hide-and-Go-Seek. When I came out I realized Eric was helping Livi hide, leaving her in the spot all by herself, and then Ethan would look for her. I noticed it took Ethan quite a while to find her so I decided to sit in on the next round.

When Ethan and I were allowed to come in we looked all over my room. She wasn't in the closet, she wasn't by the dresser, she wasn't in her usual spots. 5 MINUTES LATER I finally saw her little toes peaking out behind the pillows on my bed. She had laid under there completely quiet, totally still for 5 whole minutes. I could not believe it. I know adults that can't do that, and she is only 2! She is going to grow up to be the queen of Hide-and-Go-Seek!!!

Here is a video. I asked her to hide there again just so I could show how cute it was. She didn't last as long, but you get the idea.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Auctions Are Dangerous

Thank you to everyone who wrote and provided so much support for me with the last post. I felt truly loved and supported. You are all funny, amazing, caring women and I am lucky to have you in my life.

That being said, maybe I do have a shopping problem. :) We had the ward auction on Saturday (maybe that is why we had the lesson on Sunday) to raise money for our Young Men and Young Women to go to camps this summer. Not only did we make 2 different desserts to auction, Eric was the only YM leader that could go (he's not even technically in the YM though) so he had to set up, clean up, and help run things. Plus I took it upon myself to help inflate the bids a little and get some items started.
We ended up with 2 jars of salsa, Spiderman pillow cases, 2 young men to help in the yard, one of the leaders to help put in new toilets, a dozen cinnamon rolls, some of my own cupcakes (Ella really wanted them) and a balloon swan, a balloon frog, and a balloon umbrella (not very useful in the rain we decided).

Toward the end of the auction Eric turned to me and asked "should I auction off a will?" I said sure and so he went up. He ended up with the single highest item sold! The youth raised a ton of money, we ate way too many yummies, and we were able to enjoy the 3 balloon for about a hour before they popped. Money well spent.