Sunday, September 21, 2014

Fall Fun

FALL

It's Fall! My favorite time of year! Well actually I don't think it's "officially" Fall yet...but it sure is beginning to look  and feel like it!
We went for a drive up Butterfield Canyon for Family night which worked out good since Logan needed a collection of some kind for scouts. We decided to grab some different leaves while up there and called it good. We also wanted to see if it was open clear to the top still. The visitor center at Kennecott is still closed because of the slide and when Charmaine gets here we wanted to be able to show it to her. Luckily it still is and we were able to look out over the mine. It was such a perfect outing!

Lots of different colors!

So many deer out!

Wild Turkeys

More color just starting to pop

The boys looking out at the mine



The mine. It's so massive I couldn't get it all in one shot.

Got to the top just as the sun was setting!

Liam King of the mountain

A few of the leaves we got for Logan's collection


Ice Skating/Garage Move

In other news we've made more progress at RaeLene's old house. When I said we got RaeLene all moved I meant we got her *house* all moved. We still had the garage, shed and yard stuff to be sorted and moved. Justin is very much like his dad in that he keeps anything and everything garage related. Shawn had parts, pieces, fluids, and anything that could ever be used in or on cars, for home repairs or anything else, so it's a lot to go through.
Justin's sister and mom both got one of his toolboxes of tools and the rest is coming to our house. To say it's A LOT is an understatement.
Saturday I took the big kids ice skating at the Olympic Oval while Justin and Emily packed and loaded a full truck and trailer full of stuff.
After skating Justin and Emily spent the next 4-5 hours unloading and organizing the garages at our house while the big kids played some more together. I helped a little here and there but it was mainly all the two of them and they made some serious progress! Plus I don't think we'll ever need to go to Auto Zone again haha! It was a fun day for the kiddos and Justin felt very accomplished and relieved to get a lot done. Slowly but surely we're figuring it all out. The house is actually already under contract so we've got to get a move on and get the last little bits of odds and ends moved or chucked.

Getting the skates on and ready to go!


Kaid, Kar, Logan and Brooklynn

Kar and Brooklynn

Bug whizzing by

I am definitely not as coordinated as I used to be! But hey, I didn't fall!

I love all these cute kiddos!

video


Pinewood Derby/Prank

The kiddos had their pinewood derby this past week. Sometimes having three kids so close in age is so hard. Making three cars for the same race is a lot. The kids all came up with their own design luckily and just needed help using the saw to cut and then they were able to paint with minimal supervision. They were all very different from one another and all pretty cool looking. Kaid kicked butt! He won every race in the first round and was able to move on to the finals. When he went against the best of the best he ended up coming in 4th. Logan came in third every single time and couldn't have cared less he just loved how cool his looked and Kar came in second every time and didn't get to move on either. What everyone was really looking forward to though, was the race between Justin and one of the old scout masters! They were talking trash to each other and were so excited. Justin ended up losing all three times they raced and it was pretty funny!

The best part of the night had nothing to do with the derby though. We decided to take the kiddos out to do something nice for a friend that night. The next day is a very difficult day for this particular family and we wanted them to know we were thinking of them. Because it was only 9:30 at night there was a good chance somebody could be awake and might see us, so we had the boys get on their ski masks so they would hopefully not recognize us. Since Justin and I don't own ski masks we used some of my Nylons. Holy cow hilarious! Justin was shouting that I need fatter legs as he tried to pry it over his big head and we both looked ridiculous! hahahahahaha! Apparently we aren't very sneaky though because they knew it was us even though they never saw us. So I sent them the pictures of our awesome sneaky selves and I think they liked that better than the actual act of kindness haha. Which reminds me, I was curious if the cat that was outside clawed it's way into the donuts...Hmm, I'll have to ask if I remember haha.

The cars

Logan and his guitar car

Kaids car

Karsons car

wearing glasses and hanging out with the cool kids at the race :)

It was on!

video



Aren't I perty?!

Look at that ear! LOL He never did get it over his chin hahaha

The Family that pranks together stays together! :)

Me and my posse
Water Heater/Helmets and Chest Hair

Thursday we had the pleasure of dealing with our water heater breaking. Water all over the floor (luckily it didn't get to the carpet) and the plumber came and told us everything needed updated (we need a 4" in vent instead of a 3" and a million other dumb things) and that not only was the water heater broke but the pressure control valve for all the water in the house was broke because we were at 95 psi instead of 60. It would be $2200.00 to fix everything! I about had a heart attack! The people we called were great and knocked the price clear down to like $1600.00 but that was still painfully high! Luckily Justin works in a place where he knows somebody in just about any trade. He had his plumber friend come over who was able to just turn the pressure down rather than replace the whole unit (that saved a few hundred bucks) he also helped us put in a new water heater without updating things that weren't necessary. Luckily when all was said and done we spent less than $700 and Justin was able to get the experience of helping so he learned a few new tricks.

While the water heater repairs were going on the boys came into the house and said "Mom, I have a great idea! I just need to grab my helmet!" Oh boy. That was a frightening statement! I went outside and sure enough they were doing something dumb! They tied a rope from the wagon to a bike and were towing each other. Kar crashed into the tree when he was riding in the wagon (that kid and trees have a rough history haha) but luckily wasn't hurt and then when he was towing he biffed it on the bike. He scraped his chest and said "mom, I'm scared to look" he slowly pulled up his shirt and looked it. "That's not that bad...........Hey....I have chest hair.....COOL!" hahahaha made me laugh so hard. I think his "chest hair" was just peeled up skin from the scrape but he was so happy about it I couldn't help but laugh.
Logan and Karson

Karson and Kaiden

Looking at the owie and discovering chest hair


video


Liam Fix

Of course I have to get some Liam cuteness into this post. He recently learned to eat a banana all by himself the big boy way. I've been cutting it up and he eats one or two pretty much every day and one day I was headed out the door to get kiddos so I just handed him the banana to see if he could do it. If not he was going to have to wait until after pick up. Much to my surprise he ate it no problem! I snapped a pic, loaded him up, and he enjoyed it on the way to school! I also just love the fact that he'll now wear a tie to church without ripping it off. He is so darn cut in it that I just can't even stand it! :)

Trying out a banana the big boy way

Such a big boy!

Look at that handsome boy freshly awaken from his nap for church


Date Night/Sad News

Lastly Justin and I were able to go on a fun date with our friends. Mid morning of the day of our date I got the news that my Grandpa in Mississippi died. He had just gone into hospice and we knew the end was near but it still came much quicker than anyone anticipated. I was planning on driving out this week with my mom and sister but we were just too late :( His funeral was today, Sunday (My mom says it's a southern thing to do the funerals quick) and there was just not enough time to get there. It was tough news to hear after an already hard couple weeks with everything going on with my stepmom.
I was so happy we had plans with friends that night because I definitely needed a break and a chance for my spirits to be lifted. We tried a new place for dinner and then did some mini golfing. We of course laughed a lot and were reminded that even in tough times there is some good to be found somewhere if you'll just look for it.

Hope it's okay I stole this... :)

Me and my Honey mini golfing

Thursday, September 18, 2014

More big news!

I have more big news!
We are expecting a new family member!
Don't get all excited and start spreading pregnancy rumors though because it's not what you might think.

Through a ward member on Facebook I learned that an organization was desperate to find Host Families for some teens from Germany. It piqued my interest and we called the lady to just see what the process was like to become a host family. Before I knew it we were picking a student!

It's only three weeks and the students have been learning/speaking English for 8+ years so there shouldn't be much of a language barrier. It is an all girl school coming and the lady narrowed it down to three profiles for us to see and read, and then we picked.
We were told they are here to experience American family life. They are to be treated just like our other children. They need to do chores, come along to all our regular activities, attend church and experience our culture. Mom is Mom, Dad is Dad, siblings are siblings, Grandparents are Grandparents, and Aunts and Uncles are Aunts and Uncles.
Our new German daughters name is Charmaine! We are now friends on Facebook and have started communicating. She calls me her American mum and she is such a cute girl! She sounds so fun and is so excited to come to the U.S.

I think and hope it will be a good experience for my kiddos to be exposed to another part of the world and learn about another culture. And we are so excited to show her around our beautiful state and show her a little glimpse of our life.

So friends and family, get ready to meet our newest friend/family member in a couple weeks!




Friday, September 12, 2014

Important Catch Up

I'm going to have to keep this short due to lack of time. There are a couple of life changing events that have taken place that I need to hurry and blog about before too much time passes.

NEW HOUSE
The first would be RaeLene's new house. I have a surprisingly crazy amount of emotion about this. It's so bizarre because I'm feeling so sad and so happy and so excited all at the same exact time. There are so many memories of Grandpa in that house and I so badly want Liam to know his Grandpa. Over the past few weeks I've come to realize that just because we're saying goodbye to a house doesn't mean we're saying goodbye to our memories. Liam will still hear stories, see pictures and even though he might not be able to swing from the rope swing in the cherry tree, he can still learn about Grandpa and make new memories with Grandma in her new house. And her new house is beautiful and so perfect for her! She has a great new ward and we're really happy for her. I'm going to try to get some pictures of the old house and I'll have to get one of the new house too.

We've moved the last of RaeLenes things out and the house is now vacant. It's on the market and ready to sale. Thursday night we had a spur of the moment thought and decided to let the big boys and Justin have one last campout in the backyard. Justin's Grandparents were in town so we invited them. Before we knew it a couple of Shawn's siblings were coming and it turned into a family party :) It was good to sit with the fire and have fun together. Liam and I didn't stay the night because he was just getting over being sick and I was just coming down with something. The next day Justin, his uncles, and neighbors at the old and new house helped move. I spent the day sick and Emily watched Liam for me.

Grandma & Grandpa's house

For Sale sign out front

Party time

Last Camp out in that yard


Great Grandma and Grandpa Allen with Liam

Playing with fire (Just like Grandpa taught haha)


Justin in his Dad's shop at the back of the garage

One of his Dad's tools

The shed he built

ICU
Next would be that my stepmom is in the ICU. Monday she stayed home sick from work and around 2 PM she collapsed. Luckily her mom was there to call an ambulance and they were finally able to find her blood pressure and get a heartbeat. While in the ER she started vomiting black. They decided to go into her belly and do exploratory surgery. They found a lot of bacteria/infection but don't know what caused it or where it came from. She is on steroids and a whole slew of other meds on a daily basis to keep her alive because of a tumor she had years and years ago so they were thinking that her intestine had a dead spot or her kidneys would have some damage from her meds but all her guts looked good. They've sent out cultures but so far haven't figured anything out. After surgery she was placed in ICU and has been there on a ventilator (and a million other things) ever since. They say she's still not out of the woods but she is stable so we're staying positive. I'm finding it very difficult to make myself go into an ICU unit. Too many memories that are still too fresh from Shawn. So I've been just going to the waiting room each day to make sure my dad is eating and see what he needs. That's all we know for now.

Becki

Went and picked from my dads garden and cleaned the house a little

Emily came down when she heard and it's been so fantastic to have her sunny personality around helping this week!

Being fish with her mermaid hair



We took my Dad to dinner last night



STUFF
Other than that it's just been school work and daily life.
Kaid had to make a newspaper style poster about himself and for his important life event he talked about Liam being born. He started it out with "My mom was starting to get a gut"hahahaha gotta love kids and their honesty!
I hosted an Usborne Book Party and then somebody at my party signed up to do their own so between the two parties I got quite the haul of books. I can always justify spending money on books for the kids and they are such good books and good quality.
Lastly I made another page for Liam's quiet book. It's a page with beads from 1 to 10 on strings that the beads can slide across. I also had the brilliant idea to ask Emily if the Big Shot can cut felt and guess what? It can! So I was able to cut out the letters for the cover.

Kaids Poster

Liam's books (I have a few more "That's not my..." books not pictured that I'm saving for Christmas)

Karson and Kaiden (they each have 2 not pictured being saved for Christmas too)

Logan and Brooklynn's (I have 2 I'm saving for Logan's Christmas as well)

Liam's new kitty friend that keeps showing up

Looking in the book shelf for something

6 of my dad's 9 grandkids

Watching Justin cut down a tree in Grandpa Durfey's back yard

watching the same Primary songs VHS tape from Gma & Gpa Allen that the twins did when they were babies

Working on Dad's truck while everyone is gone

playing in the puddles

Front of Liam's book with the pretty Big Shot letters

Inside pouch with his name