Sunday, January 27, 2013


We haven't had much excitement around here for the last few days, which is fine by me!  Especially since I've been feeling kind of crummy.  The kids and I have been sharing some kind of fun virus, and we've all been a little under the weather.  The kids were good to play while I rested for most of the mornings last week and finally would get my act together around noon, so we didn't get out much.  They've actually been really good kids, especially while I wasn't feeling well, so I am definitely grateful for that!

Glad to report, though, that I have been feeling a lot better the last couple of days, so that's made me happy.  Yesterday Michael and the kids came to see my tournament volleyball game and it was fun to have a cheerleading section.  We lost (I really stink at volleyball!), but it was still fun, and afterwards we surprised the kids with a family lunch at Red Lobster.  We drive by one every day on the way to and from Ryan's school and the boys have been begging to go there, so they were thrilled!  It was actually a really nice time, until the very end when Calvin kind of lost it.  But overall I'd call it a success.  It was a nice Saturday, doing things together.

This morning Michael was determined to let me sleep in (he's a good man!).  The only problem is that I hear everything, so it's kind of hard for me to sleep in.  And the kids are pretty determined to find me right away in the morning, especially Calvin.  It was pretty funny this morning when he got up.  Michael and I had switched spots so he was by the door, and I was sleeping with a pillow over my head in hopes of not hearing quite so much.  I heard Calvin come out of his room and come into ours.  He walked to where Michael was (my usual spot) and then around to the side of the bed where I was.  I guess he didn't see me under the pillow, because he walked back and forth a few times, and then left the room to search the rest of the house.  After a few minutes he came back and went back and forth between our spots again a couple of times and then finally ripped the pillow off of my head and was delighted to finally have found me!  Then Michael went and fed the kids breakfast, and I stayed in bed for another hour or so.  It was nice!

Today once we got to church I was holding Sophie and realized she probably had a fever.  She almost fell asleep in my arms, and when I went to sing in the choir I passed her to Michael and she did end up falling asleep in his arms, poor tired little girl!  Michael fell asleep, too :)  And so I didn't send Sophie to her class but I still had to teach the music time for the kids in Primary, so Michael and I traded off sitting with her on our laps in our respective classes.  She was pretty good natured for not feeling well, and I actually really loved all the snuggles.

Here are some random things that have been on my mind lately:

-Every time we have family prayer, it's like an all-out brawl between the kids over who gets to kneel next to me.  It's started to really get annoying!  Maybe it should be endearing....

-I am 28 weeks and 12 more weeks feels like an eternity!  The way my stomach muscles are begging for mercy, I'm not sure how I'm going to make it!  Also, sleeping really is almost impossible.  And my doctor told me I should try cutting out dairy for a week to see if that helps my upset stomach, and it turns out that not eating dairy is really REALLY hard for me.  A bowl of cereal is my top comfort food choice (if we're out of strawberries and yogurt).

-Sophie got a sweet little stuffed dog from Carolin for Christmas.  This week she finally named it.  It's name is Steve.

-Michael showed the kids and me this video and now I CANNOT get the song out of my head.  Ever.

-Christy is going to Chile on her foreign exchange year and she leaves in July!  I am so excited for her!  But I am already really really sad thinking about how much we'll all miss her, so I try not to think about it... The good news is that she is coming to visit this weekend.  Yay!

Well, this was a nice random post!  Here are a few nice random pictures!

We took the kids to an ice castle exhibit a couple of weeks ago.  I took a billion pictures, but my card ate them somehow, and now I just have this one!  They had a ton of fun, and afterwards we laid the seats down in our van and had a picnic dinner on the floor.  It was a fun night!

 I let Calvin and Sophie play with my collection of ceramic dog figurines the other day.  I had so much fun playing with these as a kid.  After about 5 minutes, 4 of them were broken :(  So we'll have to invest in some super glue.  Maybe 2 is a little too young...

I made a dress for Sophie's doll who didn't have any clothes.  I made it out of an old shirt and lace form my mom's wedding bouquet.  I was pretty proud of how it turned out!

Michael thought it would look better, though, if she were riding a dinosaur.  So here you go.

And last, but not least, Calvin at his very first dentist appointment (yes he's almost 5, don't judge.) He was about as pleased as he looks.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Ice Fishing

Caroline left me with the kids this morning. The kids have been wanting to go ice fishing for a while, so we did. We went to Moore lake here in Fridley.

As we got there someone else was leaving so we used the holes they had drilled out. The kids lasted almost an hour drinking hot chocolate and bobbing their bait up and down.

Here's what they have to say about Ice Fishing.

I must say this do something to play. I did do thing. I didn't walk in the cold water.I didn't go ice swimming.

I dropped my fishing line 3 feed deep in the ice. I got to make an ice jet pack while we were moving. with Sophie. and I sat on a sled and fished. I saw a tent. I was pretending that a fish jumped out of the water and swam on the ice into the hole, but it was really my bait and we didn't catch anything.

I'm not really an expert about it. How you ice fish is you make a hole in the ice and you just drop your fishing line down in the hole.  I drank of a bunch of hot chocolate. Somebody else who was ice fishing made the holes but they left because their son accidentally stepped in the water from ice fishing and his foot got all cold. We just waited there and nobody else was ice fishing but two other people. Just when you're done ice fishing then you go back home. Really I got kind of bored.

When Calvin says he made an ice jet-pack, he means he dragged his hands along the ground while I pulled him on the sled and made the snow fly up.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

A great day!

Today was a lovely day.  I've been wanting to do something special with Sophie while the boys were at school, so today after dropping off Ryan, we picked up some donuts and surprised AnnaMarie and the kids for breakfast.  Then I took her girls home with me with their favorite fancy dresses and we did hair, makeup and nails and had ourselves a tea party!  The girls had sooooo much fun.  It always makes me wonder why I don't do things like this more often! 

We started off by printing off some princess coloring sheets while they took turns having their hair done.  Katie and Jane certainly have more to work with than Sophie!  They all wanted their hair down and curly, so that's what we did!  They were so thrilled when I broke out the makeup, especially when I had 3 different lipsticks to choose from.  Katie squealed, "Eeeek!  We can CHOOSE!!!" 

Then we had ourselves a little tea party and they were all three very excited to pour their own juice all by themselves.  I was very impressed, Katie even kept her pinky up the entire time!  Our tea party was a little rushed, since we had to get Calvin from preschool at noon, but while I was getting everything together for us to leave, the girls treated me to a band!  What better way to end a tea party, right?  They played "The Farmer in the Dell", and it was just fabulous.

Then we picked up Calvin and headed back to AnnaMarie's house where we ate some lunch and then headed off to go swimming at the Andover YMCA.  We had such a great time!  6 kids is a lot at a pool, but we pulled it off!  It was a really lovely day!

Before I post pictures, I just have to share my 2 favorite quotes from today.  I was doing Katie's hair in my room and Sophie and Jane were playing on my bed.  Katie was telling me about how Abbey and Christy curled her hair 3 different times when she was up North for Christmas.  I said, "It sure is nice to have a Christy and an Abbey around, isn't it?"  Katie agreed, and then Jane piped up, "And it sure is nice to have a Caroline around!"  Jane's such a little sweetie, she just melted my heart!

Then when we picked up Calvin, he was VERY excited to see what the girls looked like after the girl party.  He told them all how nice they looked, especially Katie, who was sitting next to him in the back seat.  Then Katie and Calvin started playing "I spy" while we were driving.  After a while, Calvin says, "I spy something VERY pretty sitting right next to me!"  Katie squeals back, "I know!  It's ME!!!!!"  Love those kids!

And now for some pictures and videos!

The girls all ready to start their tea party:

Katie pouring:

Jane was also pretty proficient with the teapot:

I love this one.  Pinkies up!

Sophie was VERY excited:

Enjoying the party:

Three adorable little buddies:

And the band!  With Katie on piano, Sophie on snare drum, and Jane on glockenspiel!

Poor little Sophie's mascara ran all over her face at the pool.  First time for everything, I suppose!

AnnaMarie and a pile of boys!

Such a sweet video of Katie holding Aiden and singing to him.  The audio is kind of garbled, but she was singing "Hush Little Baby" and it was so cute!


AnnaMarie and the very wiggly boys!

Calvin showing off his mad dunking skills:

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Still here!

I haven't blogged in a long time.  Sorry!  Life has been plenty busy and exciting, I have just been blog lazy.  Let me catch you up! 

We spent Christmas at our own house this year, which was a nice calm Christmas morning, and very lovely.  Later in the day we spent time with Kelly and Ken and their kids and Grandma and Grandpa Walton, which was fun as ever!  Grandpa and Grandma Walton surprised the kids with a trip to Disney World in February for their Christmas present and let me tell you, the kids are ecstatic.  And I'm not too sad to spend a few days in Florida in February either!  It was a lovely day spending time all together, but a long evening after putting the kids to bed, since we were getting all ready to drive up to Ironwood on the morning of the 26th!

We had such a nice visit in Ironwood.  It was so great to spend time with everyone who was home.  It was a full house, and we loved it.  Lots of people to play with!  We had James and his girlfriend Miranda there, Abbey and Spencer, Benjamin and Chrsity, Grandpa and Lubiana.  Everyone was so good to spend time with the kids, and they adored all of the attention, as usual!  On the evening of the 26th we opened presents there and then mostly hung around home, went sledding, went ice skating, and played together for the days we were there.  So much fun to be all together!

We actually got to spend 8 days up there, and it was nice to be there for longer than our standard 2 day trip :)  Well, nice for us.  I hope it was nice for everyone else, too!  We had fun celebrating New Years Eve with lots of treats, games and waking the kids up just before midnight to bang pots and pans when the ball dropped.  It was fun, and then I promptly went to bed!

We came home on the 3rd, just in time for AnnaMarie to invite us over for dinner.  That girl has the energy of a million superheros and the patience of Job, I tell you.  I have a mounting list of IOU's for her.  More on that later.  Anyways, it was so great not to cook dinner right after a long drive and very fun to get all together.  I also started piano lessons that afternoon, which was fun!  I'm excited to get more proficient!

Benjamin left for Utah on the 4th (James, Miranda, Abbey and Spencer left on New Years Day) and Ryan headed back to school, so vacation was officially over!  And Michael enjoyed his last couple of days before starting his new job!  It was a great break.

On Monday, it was back to real life with Michael starting his new job at Flatrock Geographic in St. Paul (he's really enjoyed it so far!), and with me taking the kids to the doctor since Ryan was sick.  An ear infection and strep throat.  So he was off school again on Monday and Tuesday, and we had low-key days at home, which I honestly really enjoyed!  A sick/whiney/sad Ryan always reminds me what a great kid he is the rest of the time.  The whiney/sad behavior is par for the course for Calvin these days, but it's very rare for Ryan.  And I didn't help things by making him sit outside our house for an hour because I locked myself out of the house when we were all trying to get out the door for Calvin's preschool.  This was right after the doctors appointment on Monday.  UGH!  Lesson learned, hide a key outside.  AnnaMarie was good enough to find a last minute babysitter for her napping kids and come to the rescue (another IOU!) so it all worked out. 

Ryan was feeling much better by Tuesday afternoon, so he headed back to school again on Wednesday.  Thursday we got together with a bunch of friends and kids for a little play date which was so much fun!  I need to do those more often!  Also right before and after said play date, AnnaMarie shuttled me back and forth from the car dealership while one of our stow and go seats got fixed.  Oh, and then Katie threw up all over her car.  IOU once again!

Friday was a fun day, too, and we spent the morning hanging out with AnnaMarie and another friend.  Well, it was fun until I got home and put the kids down for a nap and then thought my water had broken.  I called my doctor's office to talk to the nurse and after telling her everyhting that was going on (possible water breaking, a few days of increased contractions, lower back pain) she said there were no other appoinments at the clinic for the day so I needed to get to the hospital to get checked out.  Then I lost it and started freaking out.  AnnaMarie to the rescue again!  She picked up Ryan from school, came and got Calvin and Sophie, and took them all back to her house for playing, dinner, popcorn and a movie while Michael and I spent the evening at the hospital.  Oh, and also my water didn't break after all and everything's fine.  This happened once while I was pregnant with Calvin, and it's just SO embarassing for some reason.  But I am very very glad that this little girl is not coming yet.  26 weeks is much too early.  Hence a lot of my hysteria yesterday. 

Anyways, all's well that ends well, and we picked up the kids around 7:30 from AnnaMarie's.  That was one GIGANTIC IOU.  And in case you're wondering, yes, I have started plotting (most likely inadequate) ways to pay her back.  Sorry, AnnaMarie! Feel free to stop answering the phone when I call! 

So that has been our busy busy last couple of weeks!  And now, for some pictures!

 Sophie putting on her new apron that Abbey made for her.  Abbey made one for each of the kids, and they are so amazing!  She is one talented girl!

James and Miranda helping Sophie open some presents.

Calvin opening presents!

Sophie with her apron and Abbey and Spencer:

Calvin LOVED his apron, can you tell?

It's a shark!

He also loved his lego Mater truck from James and Miranda:

Not sure what this present is actually called, but you can make electricity go through it and light it up using your body.  Ryan LOVED it!

Calvin's best present ever--Jake and the Neverland Pirates boat!!!!

Ryan's octopus apron.  Seriously, Abbey?  So amazing!

Calvin assembling Mater:

Ryan and his apron and Abbey:

Janny getting mobbed by the kids:

All of the kids with Abbey and Spencer and their aprons:

Ryan ready to go ice skating:

Ryan skating with Christy and Michael:

Me and Michael skating with Sophie:

Sophie putting on her chapstick from Janny:

Lubiana did Sophie's nails, and Sophie was so thrilled!  Thanks, Lubiana!

Making monkey bread with Benjamin:

Out New Years Eve treats:

Finished monkey bread!

Sophie adored the bath paints from Janny:

Grandpa reading books with the kids:

Sophie also loved her crown from Janny:

Ryan building a block village back at home:

 Sophie and I set up the crib for the baby, complete with the lovely bedding a friend gave us:

She is really excited!

And AnnaMarie feeding the boys.  This is a funny sight!  They squirm all over her!