Sunday, December 7, 2014

A Pick(le) Me Up

We've had a crazy week.  I should be posting about everything that has been going on, like moving to a new state, but I have a final tomorrow and I have to pack and sell a time! 

Last time we went to Disneyland Ethan and I were talking in line about random things.  We talked about the "old" movies my parents and aunt and uncle made based on Indiana Jones.  That got us  talking about how funny it would be to make beloved movies (Frozen, Star Wars, etc) entirely out of pickles. 

Even though this is the worst possible week, and we are all super sick, the kids really wanted to make it happen today.  They had spent all day coughing while packing up, so for the last hour of daylight Eric calmly sit and taped them do take after take.  I edited as soon as they were done, and here is the first Picklemation production:

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Livi is Thankful

What it says:
I spend Thanksgiving with (picture of our family including Tonks)
My favorite thing to eat at Thanksgiving is: cinnamon rolls and pumpkin squares
Before Dinner we: wash our hands
After dinner, we: watch Doctor Who together (it's a Tardis on the tv)
One tradition my family has is: play together

I am thankful that the things that are important to me I've seemed to successfully instill in my children.  I am thankful there wasn't video games, or yelling, or frowning faces.

Saying Goodbye

I've put off writing about this because it has just been a little too raw. We found out in May that the Bagleys were going to move. Everyone was devastated. It has been a very hard transition. Months later Livi will still break down and cry about missing Carter. Ella seems a little lost with out Maddi in her classroom. They had been in every single class together since preschool. We don't have people to invite over for birthdays, or Thanksgiving. I don't make friends easily and very rarely share my deep emotions with those outside my family and I lost the one person I had here. There are wholes in our hearts, and we are still trying to heal.

Before they left we made sure we got together and spent some quality time playing:


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Not Much Dignity Left

While waiting for Ella during her piano lesson I got to talk to several other parents and our teacher's wife.  I mentioned how unhappy I was with my professor's lack of actually teaching, and that I sometimes get a little stressed out doing my homework. 

Livi chimed in, "Mommy cried and yelled and screamed when she did her homework."

Everyone stopped and looked at me.

Thanks Livi.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Keep It Classy Scottsbluff

Thank you random citizen for allowing me the opportunity to explain to my 5 year old why someone would put a picture of a giant naked woman on their truck.  Truly, thank you.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

No Place She'd Rather Be

Eric was here first.  Tonks plopped down and promptly fell asleep.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Break Out The Diamonds, Livi's A Preschool Graduate

The title above refers to the ridiculous tradition here of getting kids gigantic gifts for graduating from the most basic of things. I only saw smaller things like balloons, toys, and candy at this one, but I fully expect bikes and clothes after Kindergarten.
Saying goodbye to Mrs. Freelove.  She moved to Texas just a few weeks later and we miss her!

Livi and Carter.  Looking at these pictures is a little bitter sweet.  The Bagleys have moved to Wyoming and we are all still coping.  Livi and Ella are especially having hard times since they had never been to school without their best friends.

Monday, October 13, 2014

The Talent (???????) Show

Every year there has been an end-of-the-year talent show for the K-2 and 3-5 grades. This was the first year any of my kids wanted to participate so I "got" to go. Ella played a very pretty piano piece that she had been working on. It's had to hear since they had the piano facing entirely the wrong direction, and the air was on, but I am so proud of her for going up and performing in front of all her peers! Besides Ella's piano, their friend Leilani's near professional singing, and a few other great performances, most of them where a little...tedious.
Ethan's friend doing what we all wanted to at this point.

Ethan was in the audience silently and immobile-y cheering Ella on.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

I Feel Like We Are Just Going Around In Circles, or Race Day

Every year the 3-5 grade students have to run in the end of year races against the other elementary schools. Last year was not the most fun time ever since Ethan was at the peak of his asthma problems. This year Ella got to run and Ethan was (is) doing much better. They both ended up getting ribbons and feeling very proud of their accomplishments. Ella got first and Ethan got second in their heats!
Ella on the field hearing the instructions.

Ella with her relay team; Austin, Maddi, Ella and Clara.



Ethan and Elijah waiting their turn.

Ethan at the starting line. 

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Ella Turns 9

Ella and her spoils.

Casey is getting more brazen in his attempts to claim his spot in the family.

We had our end of the year Activity Day gathering at our house where Ella got to hang out with friends and eat junk food while watching a movie.  Fun all around.

The Bagleys were nice enough to come over after to celebrate Ella.

We had a cupcake bar where the kids were able to decorate and pile on as much candy as possible.

Friday, October 10, 2014

What the HAL is going on? or Ella's Passion Project

Our piano teacher recently pointed out that when I say "Ella's at HAL" it sounds like she is in a much darker place.  In the spring the kids in HAL (High Achievement Learners) worked on a passion project, which they presented at the end of the year.  They could pick any thing they were interested in learning more about, and were supposed to spend a certain amount of hours researching and working on a presentation.

Ella could have picked anything.  I thought it would be dance, or music, or writing, or stars, but she surprised me with "baking."  She wanted to know more about how it works, and to do more of it herself.  We ordered books, she did research on the internet, and she baked 3 different yummies (mostly) by herself.  She made cookies and this power point as her presentation on what she learned.  I helped with the execution of one or two things, but it is 99% her hard work. 

Ella's Presentation Table.

Livi and Carter being "supportive."

Ella explaining her project to one of her advisors.

Dwerping At The Park

The weekend before my birthday I dragged everyone to Cheyenne to go to Outback and the bookstore. While we were there we went to a cute park in the center of town. I got some good pictures of the kids and loved being silly with everyone.
Does anyone else see this and think James Franco?

A very historical train that was very...historical.  I can't remember why it was cool, but at the time I was thoroughly impressed.


Eric on the tinniest swing in the world.

Failing at Waiting, or Ethan's 5th grade program

The school programs here are always crazy. For some reason they turn into big family reunions the likes of which I can only fathom for graduations or weddings.  Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, cousins, second cousins, everyone shows up to every program.  Ethan's 5th grade music program was combined with all the 5th grades in the district so they decided to hold it in the concert hall in the high school.

I knew going into school program and dance season that I wanted a better camera for taking pics and videos under the lower lights.  I have a good DSLR but it is so old it doesn't do video.  Using my birthday money early, after hours of research, I picked a camera and found it actually available in town.  Knowing I would have to be early to get a seat, and armed with my new camera, I arrived an hour early to the program. 

We got great seats, third row, on the side that Ethan said he would be standing on.  Unfortunately Ethan didn't share the fact that due to the amount of kids in the program they were set up at 90 degree angles and my "perfect" seat was basically the one place in the auditorium I wouldn't be able to see him.

 I did get to glimpse the back of his head a few times.

Monday, October 6, 2014


Things have been a little hectic in our house.  I could list all the things that have kept me away, but I want to document them here so I don't forget this crazy, horrible, wonderful summer and fall.

 Recently Eric decided that we needed to refinance.  It is a smart financial move, based on the original loan we got and the amount of sweat equity we've put in, and the future we have ahead of us, but that means that for the last 10 days we have been finishing every project I started or wanted to do in the last 4 years.  Everything we did would have taken about 6 months for normal people but we crammed it all in in a week and a half.

How did we do this?  Caffeinated soda and candy.  We would get kids off to school, Eric would go to work and I would start work around 8am.  Taking breaks only to get kids and take them to activities I would work until at least midnight almost every night.  Almost, because there were a few nights I was up until 1:30 or 2am.

I feel like I was hit by a truck, I am so physically exhausted.  After hiking Crypt (that will be another post) I felt refreshed compared to what I feel now.  It will have been worth it after a few nights sleep, and a little time, but right now I just feel tired of my house.  OTBS it is really nice to not have projects hanging over my head.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Journal Maxwell

Eric got addicted to The Walking Dead.  He would watch it while loading the dishes, while waiting for Livi to fall asleep, and basically any second he could get it on his phone before I got exasperated.   He always had headphones on and was pretty careful the kids never saw it, but one day Ethan glimpsed over his shoulder and exclaimed "Dad, what are you watching!"  Livi, without missing a beat, replied "Journal Maxwell."  We all thought is was hilarious and now "Journal Maxwell" has taken on a life of it's own.
This is only the beginning,  They have created their own story and theme song.

Friday, June 13, 2014

They Keep Getting Taller

Is anyone surprised my daughter is the tallest in the classes by a large margin? 

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Easter Surprise (Not to me, I called it)

I was a little worried about Tonks eating treats left out by the Easter Bunny.  Eric assured me she was fine, she wouldn't touch any eggs, so there was no reason to lock her in our room at night.  We woke up to 5 stolen, open, and eaten plastic eggs.  All filled with tiny doggy poison, chocolate.  Tonks got to spend Easter morning in the dreaded doggy prison, the shower. 
Of course she was fine.  Some Yorkies die after a single chocolate chip, but not our dog.  We should rename her Eustache Dogger, because she is the dog with the iron stomach.
We tried painting eggs this year instead of the traditional dyeing.  It was fun, but just as messy.
The Living Room is where we have our egg hunt after the treasure hunt through the rest of the house.
The spoils of the day:
Showing off our special Easter clothes.  I forgot about Easter dresses until the day before.  Luckily with coupons and store 50% off specials we were able to get the girl's dresses and Ethan's tie for less than $20 EACH!!!

Ella took a pretty good picture of me and Eric.
(good because I like how I look.  I'm not sure if Eric likes it, but I don't even want to ask.  There are very few good ones of me out there!)

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The Best Marketing Ever

Why I love the bakery's bags:  They don't order me around in a "HAVE A DOUGHNUT" type way.  They aren't ambiguous in their design with just a plain doughnut on them (am I suppose to eat it, or admire it?).  They aren't plain, making people wonder if I have drugs, liquor, or pokemon cards in the bag.  They reach me in just the right way, soothing the part of me that drove me to the bakery in the first place.
Well played bakery.  Well played.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Static Electricity at work

Livi got some balloons in the Easter spoils from preschool.  She asked me to blow them up and I showed her how they would stick to her hair if we rubbed them on her head first.  She LOVED it...
She made me blow up more:
She stuck them to me:
She stuck them to the window:
And then she created the world's weirdest censoring art project: