Tuesday, March 6, 2018

February 2018 (into March)

Stuff that happened this month:

100 days of school (this year)
The twins' class took pictures and used an age app to age themselves to "100 years old". (Looking pretty good for 100!) I can see some of our grandmas features in these pictures!

Alee's class read for 100 minutes (throughout the day).

1000 days of school (ever, for twins)

They told me and I said, really? 
(Then did the math: 5 years x 180 days (that's 5K-4th) + 100 days (this year). Yep. It was indeed the twins' 1000th day of school.
They exercised for 100 seconds x 10 different exercises. (1000 seconds of exercise).

After school homework time (in the car rider line) story:

Alee needed a sentence with "babies" so I asked her, "What do twins mean to a mom?" (I expected an answer including the word babies.)
Alee correctly said, "They mean more work."
Alee is never dull! Sometimes I would appreciate a little less drama from her.
Alee has a new infatuation with bathroom words (like a 3 year old).
She also has brought back her obsessive compulsion with accidentally swallowing nonedible things.

I thought it would be fun to document some "favorites" for the record.

Kids' Favorites "snapshot" (because you know it changes all the time)

Favorite color, movie, show, song, artist, subject, free time activity, food

Color: Violet
Movie: The Little mermaid
Show: Miraculous Lady bug
Song: Shower (by Becky G)
Musical Artist: Disney (song writers)
Subject: PE (physical education)
Free Time Activity: playing with Kaitlyn
Food: macaroni and cheese

Color: Pink
Movie: Boss Baby
Show: Bunk'd
Song: Sorry (by Justin Bieber)
Musical Artist: One Direction
Subject: art (which she doesn't even have this year)
Free Time Activity: bike riding
Food: mint chocolate chip ice cream

Color: Blue (sky and ocean)
Movie: The Peanuts movie
Show: Dude perfect (YouTube channel)
Song: Count on me (by Bruno Mars)
Musical Artist: Anna Kendrick
School Subject: math
Free time activity: reading
Food: mashed potatoes

Musical Artist:
School Subject:
Free Time activity:
(I didn't realize I hadn't asked Carolyn last month! I'll update this when I have a chance to get her answers!)

Color: Gray
Movie: Star wars
Show: Gravity falls
Song: X step (djvi)
Musical Artist: Toby Fox
School subject: math
Free Time activity: play games with friends
Food: Oreos

Back to February!

Valentine's was a rushed day, no, a rushed week! Maybe that's just the whole month...

February has turned into the month of medical checkups. Every child (with teeth) had a dentist appt scheduled (though Seth's was moved to March), and the twins had their 11 year old check up, which included shots.

To avoid being at the dentist for 4 hours in a day, and everyone missing a full day of school for a one hour appt, I scheduled them separately or in pairs, so I spent 4 days in two weeks doing appts. (This is a much bigger deal when your productivity is at about 30% because of a baby. That was pretty much all I accomplished each of those days.) Plus follow up visits from some of those checkups.... We were at 7 appointments (9 if you count that 2 kids were seen in the same visit twice) in February. The van had a "doctor" visit too for new tires. 
The twins got milkshakes for being so brave for their shots. (I would have gotten them ice cream anyways for the pain of having to get shots - but they definitely earned them!)

Gideon and I had lunch with Alee after her dentist check up.

I turned 36. Family visited. Twice. No, three times (but in one visit we celebrated all birthdays since we only see them about once a year). We had 3 consecutive weekends with parent visits - one from each parent!
I only took pictures of the weekend we had the set that we don't see as often! (I forget to take pictures of the ones we see every month!)
 Gideon was not afraid of their little dog, but wasn't sure at first if he wanted to touch him either. (Ranger is the dog.)

Tax returns have come in. Whoo-hoo!
(Hurray for our little tax deductions - all 6 of them!) :)
So far, we again have 2 functional phones and a comfortable couch that fits all 8 of us and a new dresser, so no one is sharing a dresser with anyone else anymore. 

Several of you have gotten texts and emails from all the kids... let me explain. :)
(Yes, all of our kids have phones. No, our elementary kids don't have phones.) huh?

Since Rob and I got new phones, we reset ours and had a great phone shuffle and let them choose (oldest to youngest) a phone.
Seth chose Rob's old one, Carolyn kept the one she got for Christmas, Kaitlyn got Carolyn's old phone, Natalie got the old "house phone", Alee got Seth's phone (identical to Natalie's), and my old phone which was having serious issues staying on wifi and using up data is now the "house phone".

The youngest 3 with phones don't have full functionality since they're not on my plan like Seth and Carolyn, but their phones will text through hangouts. We can share their numbers with you if you'd like to text with any of them.)

We have a few other things that will fit in the tax return money (one backyard treat for the kids and the rest "boring stuff" that has to wait for extra money like this), but I like to spend slowly and carefully so it might take a few months to get the things it's budgeted for.

What else happened in February? How about a picture story:
 I started testing (and purging) my recipe/cookbook collection. (Dessert pizza was this one.)

 Gideon expands his love of music to the piano. It's in the disharmonious style.

A month older...

The apple trees are growing (remember Rob's project?)

 Bathtime is probably the favorite activity for Gideon!

 My boys in their matching ties!

Still loving a bath!

 Found this cleaning out the van (on the day I dropped it off to get new tires)
We signed it. Kaitlyn now feels about this how Alee feels about her picture of "Aberham Lickin". (I am putting both on my wall framed!)

Gideon likes to be up high on shoulder, upside down, and bent backwards - my little acrobat!

Carolyn made and decorated my birthday cake.

Spring came (and as we've entered March, it's lost again) - hoping to see it back next week!

Moving into March....
Gideon's first tooth popped through - this was the day I first noticed it about to come through. I can't get him to cooperate for a picture now that it's just poking through the gums.

Gideon practiced driving. (Oh, wait, that was Seth - Gideon just plays on the steering wheel in the line at the kids school while we sit and wait.)

He just looks so big lately!

Friday, February 2, 2018

The New Year Begins! 2018

The new year is starting off cold (oh! the electric bill!), but it's starting off a good year. 

Our little cutie turned 6 months old and is growing and getting "big" so fast! (He's getting big in skills, but he's still a little in size.)

First time in a shopping cart seat.

Kaitlyn and I play around with camera settings.

Natalie is reading through books so fast; she reads constantly.

We've made a little more progress on the storeroom - Rob building the shelves and Beth organizing. (My goal is to get the floor cleared and have enough stuff for everything.)

Rob's birthday cake kind of looked like something from the swamp at the end of the CandyLand game. (I was going for "death by chocolate", but cake decorating isn't my strength!) It tasted really good though - most of us couldn't finish our piece.

Alee's American historical project was on Amelia Earhart (which is the reason for the costume)...yep, I made that hat (thanks to an early release school day and some sibling babysitters).

Still the star of the house; Gideon loves his siblings as much as they love him.

The twins got to be signed out of school and go to lunch with me (their choosing) on their birthday like the others. (Seth chose Subway, Carolyn and Alee chose IHOP.) The twins chose the mall food court. Usually I say no to the carousel, but for their birthday, I said yes.

They're 11 now!

Their cake looked much better than Rob's. It's an ice cream cake. Natalie chose hot fudge cake (which we had Saturday with Rob's family), and Kaitlyn chose ice cream cake, which we had on their actual birthday.

Natalie loved Kaitlyn's ukulele so much at Christmas that we got her one too for her birthday. Kaitlyn got an assortment of things (since her things cost less) - a unicorn hoodie (that took me all day to sew pieces onto a hoodie thanks to my less than helpful 6 month old), a "briefcase" to play spy, a nail art kit (to be a beautician), and a pocket racer (which they both got). The less then $5 pocket racers were so much more popular than I expected. Worth it!

It's a little messy looking on the inside - it's layers of cookies'n'cream cake with layers of cookie dough ice cream (that's what she wanted!) with chocolate buttercream frosting between layers and homemade sweetened whipped cream all over the outside. (In the future I wouldn't do the buttercream since it's too crumbly when frozen. I've gotten good at the cake/ice cream part, but I'm still experimenting with what works best for the frostings/fillings. (Kaitlyn asks for some flavor of this every year, so it's good practice for me.) :)

Ready for February - I think. :) (Ready for warm weather to come and all the germs going around to go away before they catch up to us!)

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

2017 comes to an end

I posted most of Christmas break while we were at my mom and dad's for new year's, so this is just finishing out that visit and the holiday.

Because of traveling, we have attended church in 4 different wards during December (our own plus brother's and both parents here).

 We played games late into the night on new year's eve.

Honestly, we barely made it to midnight - some of us due to baby exhaustion, some because they are just morning people, and some because of age (old or young!) Those still up, watched the ball drop, had some sparkly juice, and went to bed!

Happy New Year! 2018!

 Football time!

Rolled ice cream time
They pour it with mix-ins, chop and stir as it begins to freeze, spread it flat, curl it into rolls.

 We each split one with a partner; it was surprisingly creamy.

Also surprising was the gamecock football victory!

Back Home - settling in, using new presents, and getting ready to go back to school Wednesday.
 Look what Rob made! (This one started as a dowel, but he made a few other things that day from branches or bits of wood he had.)

I helped Kaitlyn make chocolate eggs for the kids.

None of us were really ready for real life to start back, but it did anyways.