April 29, 2009

Nap Time

I took this picture a few days ago while visiting my parents. I just love it. Cameron really buddied up to my dad while I was there. He was feeling sad one afternoon so Grandpa rocked him. And look, Cameron even fell asleep without his binkie!

I am so excited to move close to my parents and have them be part of my childrens' lives, and vice versa.

The Sandhill

When my oldest boys were small we started a tradition of stopping at The Sandhill on our trips from Utah to New Mexico to visit my parents. There isn't an official name, I'm sure, but that's just what we call it. Our boys couldn't wait and would ask not how far to Grandma and Grandpa's, but first, how much longer til the sandhill. This big hill of sand is about a mile out of Moab and just past (or before depending on which way you are coming) the entrance to Arches National Park on the opposite side of the highway.

The perspective of this picture doesn't really show how steep it is. (so I'm not a professional...but hopefully you can tell where the incline starts)

The boys and Scott usually climb all the way to the top at least twice before we leave. I think I have only been to the top once or twice. At first because it was too dusty for my contacts and then later because I was usually at the bottom with the littler kids or babies. Anyway, they climb to the top and then run and jump down. Great fun. Also it feels so nice on your barefeet and fun to run your hands in. And quite fascinating to get a dirt clod and rub it until there is a hole in the middle seeing how big the hole gets before it breaks. It is a place not to be missed if you are visiting in the area.

Here are the pictures I took on my trip with the little ones. We climbed to the rock about 1/3 of the way up.

going up . . .
and coming down...

April 24, 2009

Road Trip

I took my two youngest kids and went south (NM) to visit my parents. My sister from Las Vegas is visiting too.

When I was a kid, I remember playing games in the car with my mom when we went on trips. We would tally colors of cars that passed. We would spell words from the signs along the road (like your name). We played "I'm thinking of..."--I guess 20 questions, but that's not what we called it. We played the alphabet game, the one where you go on a picnic and bring an apple, and then the next person brings and apple and a banana, etc. And I can't forget the country western music. It was on vacations and camping trips where we learned all the Charlie Pride songs. ...in a Mississippi cotton pickin' delta town, one dusty street to walk up and down...


Road trips with my kids are different. My kids watch their DVD's and I listen to my audio book. We did listen to a Disney CD together. I tried to sing some songs with them, but they didn't want to. They just want their movies and their snacks. In fact I was worried that Janessa would talk my ear off for eight hours, but she didn't. The only 'big' question she asked was "Why are there mountains?" While we were going through the mountains, we did try to see if there were any rocks in fun shapes.

Before we left I was thinking of all the things I could do with them in the car, like singing pre-school songs, reciting nursery rhymes, telling stories. But if a DVD can keep my two and five year old happy while I am driving, then I can't argue with that. Maybe on the way back I can throw in some "Wheels on the Bus."

April 22, 2009

"It Looks Beautiful, Mom." (updated)

I have been loving the sunshine. I think it is 5 days in a row now with sunny skies. Maybe 6. I may have been in it too much because I have a cold sore on my lip now. However, I don't think people will notice it much because now I have a black eye to go with it. Beautiful shades of purple actually. In fact Andy even said it looks beautiful.

I went to bed last night with a bump on my eyebrow and a swollen eyelid and woke up to an enormous purple eyelid. You can't even see my eye. I just want to crawl under my covers and stay there for a few days.

Last night I was helping Andy get ready for bed. Remember this is the kid that can't stand still and runs and jumps all day long. I was bending over him straightening his pj pants and 'night time underwear' when he decided to jump. His head smashed into my the bone above my eye--my eyebrow bone I guess you could say. I laid on the bed rolling around in pain thinking that it must be split open because I can't imagine it hurting any worse if it were. But there was no blood. Andy asked Janessa, "Is she crying?"

It actually didn't take the pain too long to subside to a dull ache, but now this ugly, ugly black eye. My brother got one once at a family reunion (coincidentally, it was from his son's head too while riding a wave runner) and it did the same thing. Wasn't very swollen at first and no bruising but as the hours went by it swelled and swelled and turned black. And it took a very long time for it to go away. So I am not that hopeful that this is going to disappear anytime soon.

And maybe I am too vain or prideful, but I am not taking Cameron to his speech class today. I just can't go out yet. Well, I suppose I could wear sunglasses . . .

update: I did take Cameron to speech class and only wore my sunglasses during circle time. By noon the swelling had gone down quite a bit and now most of my eye is visible.

April 21, 2009

Germ Free

I am used to kids waking me up at night. I rarely go for a week at a time without someone waking me up for various reasons. But last night the reason was incredulous. It is 3:00 in the morning and Janessa wakes me up because she can't find the hand sanitizer! She got up to go to the bathroom but didn't want to use soap and water to wash her hands. She wanted the hand sanitizer. It's 3:00 am! Just go back to bed! I don't care if your hands are clean or not!

I suppose I should be happy that she is striving for cleanliness and something I teach her is soaking in. But why does she have to choose the early morning hours when she decides to be obedient!

April 20, 2009

Yes. No. Maybe.

One problem I have is indecisiveness. I suppose maybe I lack a bit of self-confidence. I don't know. Sometimes, though, I really don't have an opinion either way. Too easy going at times.

I don't know if the following experience fits into the "indecisive" category or not. But it seems to. On Saturday we were on our way to Andy's soccer game. They play at one of two parks--Pioneer or Lindsay. The majority of the games are at Pioneer. We had dropped Dustin off at his game and were headed to Pioneer Park. I told Scott that I thought that Andy's game was at Lindsay Park today. He didn't look at the schedule that morning, but didn't remember having a game scheduled at Lindsay. So we went to Pioneer and found out that we were at the wrong place. The game was at Lindsay.

When I asked Scott (lovingly) why he didn't believe me he said "Your exact words were 'I think the game is at Lindsay park.'" So why didn't I say I 'knew' the game was there. Why didn't I insist he drive there and make him believe me? Because I had a tiny bit of doubt that I could be wrong. Because I figured that he knew what he was talking about and I doubted myself. Yet I know I had seen the schedule. But that tiny bit of doubt was there. Why? Why do I sometimes lack the confidence to make a decision or to convince others that I do know I am right this time?

However, put me on a sports court and I am a different person. I am competitive and decisive and aggressive and sometimes even bossy. I am very assertive. Apparently, I am confident in my abilities as an athlete.

Hmm. Something for me to ponder...

April 19, 2009

April 17, 2009


We had a good Easter weekend here. The kids were out of school Thursday, Friday and Monday.

The three little ones and I colored eggs but the bigger boys were gone to friends' houses. I didn't get any pictures though because I was too busy helping and keeping the chaos done to a minimum. Cameron had a great time putting the eggs in a color and retrieving it with his hands a few seconds later. I tried to tell him to leave them in longer, but he didn't get it. He would dye some in one color, then I would give him another color and he would do a few more. Then he did them all over again. So each egg probably had every color on it and his hand were very colorful too. Andy's hand were pretty colorful too. Janessa took her time and did about half in the time the boys were done. She even took the time to draw a flower on one. The next day they had a great time hiding and finding them in the yard.

On Saturday was a fun Easter egg and candy hunt at Grandpa and Grandma Berkleys with all the cousins. And a wonderful lunch. The weather held out most of the day. It was fun to see and be with all of Scott's family.

The kids were so excited for the Easter bunny they wanted to go to bed at 7:30. And the Easter bunny did come and left some candy for everyone.

Sunday we set the table nicely for an Easter brunch and talked about the Easter story.

In primary Andy gave a talk that went like this:

"Easter is a special day. But not because of the Easter bunny. And not because we color eggs and have Easter picnics and parties. It is special because Jesus was resurrected. He came alive again and so can we. We can live with Jesus in heaven. We have a lot of fun on Easter but always remember that Easter is about Jesus."


My two year old started preschool this week. It is actually a transition preschool to help prepare him for the school district preschool when he is 3. In other words a pre preschool. He goes twice a week for two hours at a time.

Let me explain why. He has a speech delay. A pretty severe one. I am confident that he will speak some day. However, if we can help to get him there faster or learn how to adapt until that day, I am all for it. He is a very smart little boy and comprehends everything we tell him. He just can't communicate back to us with words. So he is in a program called Up-to-3 through Utah State University to help with his speech. He and I go to speech class together once a week and have other services also. But when he is three years old, the school district takes over. So at 33 months of age the Up-to-3 program provides a transition preschool to get the kids ready.

It is hard to send my baby away for two hours to be with 'strangers'. He seems too little. Yet he seems to like it and it should help him and me with his expressive language.

My baby is potty trained, can play UNO, and is going to preschool. They grow up fast.

April 16, 2009


I was able to get out and go to the temple today. It was a very welcome break to enter the calm of the temple and "slow down" for a moment. While there, I sat and watched for a bit as women entered and left the dressing room. I had a wonderful feeling come over me. As I watched these sisters of all ages and backgrounds whom I didn't know, the words of the Relief Society Declaration came to my mind: "We are women of faith, vision, virtue and charity ..." I felt a great sisterhood with them. I felt I belonged to something wonderful and there are great and wonderful women all over the world who believe and live as I do. I can't really describe it with words. It is such a comfort to know I am not alone living "in the world, but not of the world."

April 14, 2009

Toy Box Treasures

I have not been blogging much lately. There are two reasons: 1) I have been cleaning and painting and deep cleaning and packing up my house to get it ready to sell and, 2) I suppose I have been a bit grouchy lately, because all the things I think to write about seem to be on the negative side. So I just don't write it out--I don't want everything on my blog to seem like complaining and whining, (just some of it).

Today I thought I would report on items that I found most when cleaning out closets, drawers and toy boxes as I have been decluttering. (This isn't an all inclusive list. I don't mention the garbage and candy wrappers, among other things).

If you have boys you usually have Legos (not that girls can't have legos, but...). I seem to be constantly picking up the little pieces so I wasn't surprised to find Legos in every corner and drawer and nook I cleaned out. Small blocks, bigger blocks, wheels, Lego people, body part of Lego people. I probably doubled the amount of Legos in our container when I was done.

I did find Polly Pocket accessories--those tiny shoes, purses, shirts--but not nearly as many as I thought I would. Probably because they had previously, unknowingly been vacuumed up.

I found a few dollars of change--mostly pennies but there were dimes and nickels and quarters too. Too bad my kids didn't know there was money in their closets, they might have cleaned them better.

And what surprised me the most was all the pens and pencils I found. You know when you can never find anything to write with when you need to take a phone message? They are all in your kids closets or under their beds. I found handfuls of writing utensils and crayons.

And of course there was the odd assortment of game pieces. I put those in a little basket and have yet to put them back to their original games. Maybe I just might throw the basket away and forget about it. It makes me wonder though, if we usually play games in the family room or at the table, how do the game pieces make it to bedrooms?

April 7, 2009

Soccer Princess

Spring soccer has started. We have three children playing. Janessa is playing for the first time. I had been wondering how she would do with a sport since she is so into princesses; wears dresses more than pants; loves looking pretty; skips and dances around the house and into preschool; etc. etc. The first two weeks have been cold and I realized she doesn't own a pair of sweat pants. Anyhow, she has done great in her first two games. In fact, she is the only one on her team to score goals thus far.

Well today was beautiful weather. The kids were outside and decided to play soccer. So Janessa put on her shin guards and her soccer shirt--over her dress. Very adorable! I just had to take a picture.

And just for the record--she wanted to play and has been talking about it since Andy started playing. It really wasn't me getting her into sports. Honest!