Friday, February 28, 2014

building with dad

Deke and I LOVE building things together.  Finding something we like for the house and then figuring out how to make it ourselves.  We have been wanting to try making a coffee table so we found some plans online and got to work. The weather is gorgeous, its the perfect time to be outside.  The kids always want to be out with us watching and playing on the driveway while we work.
The table frame....
The boys are always more interested than the girls who are usually busy chalking or blowing bubbles.  They already love the sounds of the drill and getting to help hammer or watch the saw cut some boards.  Oh my cute boys!!
The kids played, we continued to build until the sun started to go down.  Then we all sat and enjoyed one of my favorite things about AZ, its beautiful sunsets. I love days like this.

Happy birthday mom and dad

Birthday time again for Deke and I and I can't believe that I didn't get any pictures on Deke's birthday.  He had to work that day but when he got home the kids overloaded him with all sorts of homemade cards and presents.  We bought him a grilling book by Steven Raichlen (his favorite grill master :) ) and he was craving wings so we grabbed up a ton of wings and a couple of pizzas and headed home for games and movies.
On my birthday the weather was gorgeous so we spent the afternoon walking shops.
We headed to world market so I could grab up some new earrings.  I can never have enough earrings and they have cute ones that are only $5.  They also have some kiwi gummy candies that are so yummy that we grabbed up for a snack.
We headed home to grab up the older kids and headed to Joe's BBQ for my free birthday dinner.  We had never been there before and I didn't think it was everything everyone had raved about but it was good.
Mostly I just loved that we could sit outside enjoying the cool air under the trees and the lights.  I yearn to live somewhere that we can actually be outside more.
So 34 and 32 bring it on, hoping this year continues to be a great one!

Praying for Strawberries

 We planted a garden.  A small one out back and filled it with as many veggies as we could fit. We went to Home Depot and let everyone pick out some seeds.  Hunter grabbed onions and zucchini, Avery wanted to grow sunflowers all along the back wall and plant some carrots.  Mom and dad wanted tomatoes and peas and Emma insisted on growing some strawberries.  She took her time choosing just the right one and talked all the way home about how they would grow and she would be able to get a basket and go pick them to eat.  We went home and everybody was able to do their planting.  Emma planted her strawberry plants with loving care, it was so cute.  Within a week we went out to water them and she was beside herself because one of the flowers had opened and a tiny little strawberry was there.  "Avery! Avery! come look a baby strawberry!!" she ran in yelling.  Soon all three of us girls were huddled around it talking about how cute and tiny it was.
 That night as Emma said her prayers in her room she asked Heavenly Father to help her strawberries to grow.  "I want my strawberries to grow big so I can eat them with my waffle on conference!" she said to me grinning.  It was adorable. Conference waffles and strawberries are a family tradition twice a year.  I am now also saying my own prayers for those little strawberries for the sake of this sweet three year old.  I pray that they grow big enough for her to at least have one to pick and wash and slice for her conference waffle.  So far three flowers have opened and the berries are growing and there are about five more buds getting ready to open.  She checks them diligently every day, the other day she came running in to me saying a bird was going to get them.  We opened the door and scared it away, I think we may need to get some netting to protect them from animals.  Oh please grow strawberries, please.  Here are the peas starting to grow....
Our first two tomatoes....
Watching mom water from the window....

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Old Stormalong

Hunter's class has been studying tall tales and they were assigned a story and asked to create a short script and then act it out for the class in groups.  Two people were in charge of the backdrop, another was in charge of the props and one to write the script.  Hunter was in charge of the script and came home and spent a couple of days preparing a short script for their tale of Old Stormalong:

Narrator: Long ago just before George Washington became our first President, and fireworks lit up the sky on the fourth of July a boy named Alfred Bulltop Stormalong was born.

Mother: “Oh my Alfred you are going to grow up to be a nice big worker.”

Stormalong: “Gaga googoo, mama.”

Mother: “I’ll call you Stormalong, I think you will be a great man.”

Narrator: Years later Stormalong went looking for a job. 

Stormalong: “Let’s see I can only become a lobster trapper, a farmer or a sailor, I wonder what I should do?”

Mother: “Now Alfred, we come from a farming family so I would like you to become a farmer, but if you become a sailor or a lobster trapper that is fine with me.”

Stormalong: “Mom, I would like to become a sailor, my heart is drawn to the sea. The taller I get, the more I can see.”   

Narrator:  So, Stormalong made himself grow. By now he was six feet tall and had signed up to be a whaler on a ship.

Captain: “Now crew we have a new sailor, his name is Alfred Bulltop Stormalong.”

Narrator: Stormalong loved being a sailor and wanted to see more, so he made up his mind to grow even taller so he could spot more whales.”

Stormalong: “I see a group of whales, let’s go get them!”

Captain: “Ready the harpoons!”

Narrator: The ship started to sail but it stopped shortly after.

Captain: “What in the world is happening?”

Narrator: Stormalong dove into the sea and saw that a giant octopus had a hold of the ship.  He tied all of its legs into a sailors knot.

Captain: “What happened?”

Stormalong: “It was nothing.   I swam under the water and saw that an octopus had grabbed a hold of the ship with its eight long arms, so I tied a knot in each one.  He won’t be grabbing anymore ships anytime soon.”

Captain: “Men, we are lucky to have Stormalong on our crew.”

Narrator: Stormalong’s skills as a sailor continued to grow.  He continued to grow as well.  He soon became too large to fit into the small whaling boats so he learned to throw a harpoon twenty five fathoms away in order to catch a whale.  Stormalong loved his life on the sea but he soon grew too big for the ship. 

Captain: “I heard that a ship is being built, her name is the Albatross.  She’s the biggest boat ever built, so big in fact that the sailors use horses to travel across the decks. Her sails were sewn in the Sahara desert because they were so gigantic.”

Stormalong: “You know what, that ships going to need a captain with experience and I’m the guy for the job.  Captain, I am sorry to leave you but it’s time for me to sail onto different adventures.”

Narrator: Stormalong became the Captain of the Albatross and was able to live out his lifelong dream. He now stood four fathoms high. He continued to sail to mysterious and wonderful places all around the globe until his last days.
         The end .

Monday, February 24, 2014


 Its only February and the weather has been doing its warm up, then cool down, then warm up spring confusion.  Already had an afternoon warm enough to warrant popsicles for snack. Never a good sign for what summer is going to be like :( :(

Sunday, February 23, 2014

The day we talked about kissing.

I can just tell when the kids are wanting to talk about something.  The other day Hunter came home from school and I could tell he had things on his mind. I told Deke I was going to run to Target and just take him, he hopped into the front seat and as we pulled out of the gate he started talking.  "Hey mom, something weird happened today" he said and then proceeded to tell me that two kids from school who have been saying they are boyfriend and girlfriend kissed when they got off the bus today.  They are only ten like Hunter. I felt my breath stop momentarily.  "We believe in waiting until we are sixteen to date and then when you are sixteen you can kiss girls right mom?" So a discussion began.  We talked about the counsel from the prophet and why deke and I believe that it is important to wait until you are sixteen to date.  We talked about the stage of life he is in right now and the importance of waiting for things at the right time of life.  He had asked, "Mom when was the first time you kissed dad?" I shared the story with him as he sat there grinning.  We sat in the Target parking lot for forty five minutes and talked. I will remember this moment sitting there talking with him, looking at his big blue eyes and cute freckles and thinking how wonderful he is.  Such a good kid, he is so precious to me.  I was so glad he came to me to talk about his questions.  It also scared me to death to realize all that he is going to see around him and hear about at school.  Time is flying, it is going too fast. This whole conversation had caught me off guard and as we headed into Target I was stewing inside questioning, "Did I say the right things, did I explain it well enough, will he understand the importance?'  As I grabbed a cart he fell into step right next to me and hugged me from the side, "Thanks Mom" he said.  I melted.  Parenting.  Whoa.  It is so intimidating to me most of the time.  I hope that occasionally I get it right.      

Scitech festival

Chandler had their annual scitech festival for kids.  Tons of booths set up with experiments, activities and demonstrations all involving science.  Robots of all kinds, rockets and everything hands on for the kids to try.  
 Chandler police forensic department came and brought their truck.  They showed the kids how they dust and lift fingerprints and collect evidence from crime scenes.  This was my favorite part of the day, it was so interesting to learn about all the different techniques they use and how careful they have to be to not contaminate and collect evidence correctly.
 They had a mock crime scene set up, the kids were given a scenario and had to choose the evidence that they thought pertained to the crime. Then take it to the lab for testing...
 They then used the results to identify which of the suspects were responsible.
 There was a ton to do and the kids had fun trying everything out....lots of science lovers at this house.