Monday, August 25, 2008

Hip, Hip,... Ho-Hum

What can a 5 -yr. old expect on the first day of Kindergarten? A welcome hug from the teacher, a special desk with her name on it, a room full of crying, clinging children? How about none of the above.
Brynn was on cloud 9 this morning waiting for Dad to take her to her first day of school. You can see in the picture of her waiting and waiting. Is it time yet??? She was so way cute in her new outfit (which is actually her size), her Tinkerbell backpack with a folder full of pictures which she painted for her new teacher. She was SOOO excited to go and when it was finally time, Dad accompanied her to the big event. They didn't know where to sit or where to put Brynn's stuff, no one cried anyone even here they wondered? They did eventually find the teacher but
apparently Brynn didn't get the special treatment that her Dad thought she deserved. He even felt a little sorry leaving her there. Maybe he would have felt better if they were all sitting around in a circle holding hands and singing "Kumbaya?"

When school ended, I walked down to the bus-stop along with a gang of other neighborhood moms armed with cameras to pick up our sweet little kindy-gartners. "How was your day?, Did you like your teacher? Did you learn anything?" Brynn was pretty ho-hum about it the whole thing like it was just alright for her-- or was she just playing it cool?
"It was easy and we only had 2 recesses."

some moral support from the at-home learners

new school outfits, even for the at-home learners.

The afternoon was way more exciting. Brynn and her friend Brinley passed out tickets to all the kids in the neighborhood and invited them over to our house for a rock concert(during Cannon's precious naptime.) ...nothing like a little Hannah Montana to put an end to a quiet afternoon. For the after the concert party all the girls went out to the driveway in the pouring rain and ate popsicles and skipped and pranced and yippeed like they were having the time of their lives. The windy rain even sent our garbage can reeling down the road like a grand finale to the show. Hooray for the first day!

Friday, August 22, 2008


Everyone likes before and after pictures right? This is what our school closet looked like all during summer school, 0kay maybe all year long. "Where is the tape? Where is a pen? Where is that Monet print?" I'd had enough. It was time to get the new school year started off right. After some inspiration and a lot of perspiration, this is the AFTER. The girls have been so excited to see their stuff they have wanted to do arts and crafts all week. I have been leaving the closet doors open just so I can occasionally glance over and feel the satifstaction...Ahhh.

SOLUTION: $7 Wal-Mart over-the-door plastic shoe organizer. I remembered (like a vision) seeing one of these in one of cc's basement closets--yes, I look in people's closets when I come to visit. Thanks for the inspiration.
And now if you want to play I SPY you will find my other favorite recent purchase: an ELECTRIC PENCIL SHARPENER. Why didn't I invest in one of these years ago??! Except for the horrible grinding sound that frightens baby Cannon out of his wits, it has been wonderful!
...READY for school next week.

Alas, it doesn't take long before the proud are humbled. The other day around the dinner table Kate said, "Mom, in heaven are you going to have those red spots on your face?" Glancing over at the closet doors wasn't enough satisfaction in that moment. What red spots????!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

A Hopeless Olympic Hopeful

What I really meant to say in my Olympic poll "which events will you be watching" was rhythmic gymnastics--not "ribbon dancing." (I was going off the image my mind conjured up) But, anyway it did sound fun to watch.

So, now that we've had time to immerse ourselves into the Olympics, even if it be Online highlights, it has made me want to join in on the excitement--not as a spectator, as an athlete.

I want to stand on the podium with my national anthem playing and feel the hot tears streaming down my face. I want to feel the ultimate glory of being an athlete. So where do I sign up? Since I'm not 16 going on 12 that eliminates gymnastics.

I'll just get right to it, I think my best chance would have been the trampoline event. If only my parents had hired a personal trainer and sent me off to trampoline boarding school in Belarus at age 3 I'm sure I could have developed into gold medal material. Instead I just made up lame routines on the tramp and put on shows for the family. Look at my form in the picture. I had natural ability! Now, if I tried that, all I would have is some bladder leakage.

I played water polo in High School ( pay attention, that's some good family reunion trivia.) Now there is a tough sport! Not only do you have to be an amazon woman but you have to do that eggbeater thing with your legs while swimming one handed and fight down other amazon women to throw in a goal --oh yeah--and try not to drown in the process. I told the coach I preferred to sit out on the bench. I almost didn't graduate from seminary because of all those early morning practices (more trivia) (I had to do a summer full of make-up worksheets.)

Back to my Olympic dream--how about Shooting? Table Tennis? Badminton? Judo looks fun and I could be feisty.
Let's face it people who win gold medals are not the ones who ask their coach if they can sit on the bench.

There is glory in being a spectator, which brings me to some more trivia: I WENT to the Olympics... SLC 2002 Men's Figure Skating Event at the Delta Center--box seat! That has to be one of my top life experiences. It was AWESOME! (Thanks mom for not being able to go and giving me your precious ticket. She really really loves me.)

I guess I could live my dream through my children. Who wants to go to Belarus? Or should we just use the neighbor's trampoline?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Material Girl

We have a fashionista in the family. Ever since Brynn was a wee little girl she has shown her creative side with clothing and hairstyles. Maybe it's because one of our favorite activities is to plop on the couch and go through clothing catalogs we get in the mail (Coldwater Creek is our favorite but any will do) We make a game of it by picking one thing on each page--only ONE. That can be challenging when everything on the page sings to you but, that just makes it all the more fun. (You do this too, right?) I have fun watching the girls with their different tastes in style--not to mention the extraordinarily stunning wardrobe collections we have accumulated--in our imaginations.
Brynn and her sisters were playing babies the other day. They had uncovered a box of old baby clothes out of the basement and were using them to dress their dolls (way to recycle!) I am thinking it was about then in their room that Brynn had her lightbulb moment. Her inner fashion voice spoke out and a few minutes later Brynn paraded out of her room to show us her new school clothes. Here is the new Fall line...Tiny is out, tinier is in, think itsy bitsy baby tiny.
Brynn, wearing her skirt topped with a baby dress (size 3-6 months.)
...Ready for Geography 101 in this sporty outfit, complete with a purple shell (size 0-3 months.)
Borrowing from baby brother's wardrobe, this NEWBORN shirt looked even better when Mom suggested an added under-layer.
Brynn's fashion inspiration is going to be saving us some good $$. Although, maybe she knew deep down she was just going to get Kate's hand-me-downs anyway.
Adrie wanted in on the fun too. Here she is, trying to look comfortable in all those ruffles (size 6 months.) Kinda itchy there, Adrie?

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Even If All, Not I; All if not Even I, Even If Not, All I...and other variations

C. Reunion 2008. Can anyone say this year's theme without looking at our t-shirts? There was definitely no reading at this reunion--I didn't even bother bringing a book. But, who needs to read when there are so many OUTSTANDING, FUNCTIONAL, DOWN-TO-EARTH, SUPER-NICE, hilariously funny people to be around: 22 adults, 36 kids, 5 babies--to be exact, and one more on the way!

We can't have a family get-together without "somebody" insisting on a photo of the 2008 babies.
(you'll thank me in the future) Thanks to the parents for piling them all together. Will we be able to tell who is who in 20 years? Samuel, Adam, Cannon, Claire, Cody (on top.) (Names have been changed to protect identities.)
What do you do with 36+ cousins? Have a paper airplane flying contest, play water kick-soccer, and pound each other with water balloons (include 10 uncles in that.)

Our leisurely hike up the canyon. We knew better than to book it up that dusty trail on Uncle Dev's tail. Where did everyone think they were going to--a scenic waterfall? End result: 3 bee-stings, lots of dusty legs (and faces for the 3-ft and unders), and (luckily) zero collisions with oncoming horses and mountain bikers.

Quick! Snap a photo while we're all dressed up. We don't look like we had already stood for 30 minutes trying to pose for the whole family group portrait. Can't wait to see that finished product!

Even though you might not have detected a smile on me at 8 a.m., my favorite activity was the frisbee golf. I also enjoyed the daily devotionals, quilting service project--who knew uncle Der was so artistic?, swimming pool, skits, firework show, and the get-to-know the family fun-sheets. Thanks everyone! And to quote Uncle Dor. "See you next year--same time, same place!"

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Family Reunion Without the Family

Well, since the price of gas forced a few to cancel their plans, and since we can all get together later for Christmas, and since BD had the time off anyway and we had a place to stay...and is since even a word?...we decided to go ahead as planned to enjoy 3 days in the refreshing mountain resort of Park City. Joining us were the only locals in the family, Mom, Dad, and Rayanne.

Here's how it started:Wed. we arrived at our lovely "rented" lodge, unpacked and settled, and went out to enjoy the spectacular golf course view on the deck. Rayanne arrived with a bag of new books which she was so excited to show us. Mom grabbed, History of the Mafia and absconded herself on one corner of the patio, Rayanne took, Diet Guide for Multiple Sclerosis and planted herself on the OTHER side of the patio and I, in the middle, got out my book that I had already brought, House Calls and Hitching Posts: Stories from Dr. L's career among the Amish. Dad read Consumer Reports, Brandon, Ensignchurch magazine) The girls were happy to sequester themselves downstairs with a steady dose of the Disney Channel. As everyone burrowed into their books I said, "Seeyou all on Saturday" and that's basically what happened.

Okay, not exactly. You can't actually get much reading in if you are the parents of 4 little ones.

Here are some of the other fun things we did:

Olympic Park: watching the free-style skiers practice their moves and landing in a giant bubbling pool was AWESOME!

The .02 mile hike (enough to breath in some fresh mountain air)

Walking on Park City Main Street

City Park at Park City

Men's Golf--Greg and Brandon

Ladies Lunch--didn't parking, restaurants closed for the Arts festival, Mom guffawing at the menu prices, etc. We should have just stayed home and read our books.

Park City Arts Festival (me and mom only)

There you have it! We left Sat. to attend a baptism on the C. side of the family.

Now we are glad to be back in our friendly hometown again where people think our kids are cute!