Saturday, November 13, 2010

Yes, We are Still Alive!

Whew! I know some of you were sure that I'd never do this again, but here I am! We have been so busy that it's hard to know where to begin. I started coaching the Colorguard back in mid-May and since then our life has been crazy! In June, I took Miri with me to a 4-day long band camp with the high school kids while Ella and Brock split their time between Chad and my mom. Almost right after band camp, we headed off to CA to see my sister Brittany and Mark get married in the LA temple and visit with some other family down there. On our way back, we stopped in Vegas and took the kids to see the Knights At the Round Table show, which they all LOVED! Miri even had her moment in the spotlight (literally!) as Merlin came over and commented on how cute she was. Chad and I were pretty proud to have the spotlight on our baby girl and hear the entire arena give her an, "Awwwww!"

We had two parades in July that Brock and Miri marched in with me (more like rode in the stroller) lots of practice in August, and then Ella headed off to first grade! Going to school all day was challenging at first, but at this point she is doing well, constantly coming home with fun stories to share with us. During my practices during the schoolday, Brock and Miri sometimes went to a baby-sitter's house, stayed home with daddy, and even tagging along with me. They have put up with so much over the last few months, and have been great about it! A big thank you to all of our family members and friends who have helped out with babysitting as I have been at various shows and especially a big thank you to Chad for taking 4 days off of work to stay home with the kids, while I went down to St. George with my students. By the last day, I was MORE than ready to come home. Having to fight the urge to steal some stranger's child was proof that I was going through withdrawls!

As for our family, everyone is doing great! Ella is enjoying first grade, learning how to read, and looks forward to girl scouts every week. Brock enjoys walking to the bus-stop with me and he just lights up when he sees the school bus come around the corner! Miri is crawling everywhere and getting into everything! She helped herself to my wallet, Brock's sandwhich, and even dove into Moby Dick the other day. Chad was asked to take a class with his company in Salt Lake a few weeks ago and he was really excited to get to meet the CEO of the company as well as one of the founders. We had fun on Halloween, taking our little Leia, Obi-Wan, and Ewok out. For now, we are all looking forward to a relaxing Holiday season at home this year!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Brock 'n Roll Mania!

What a banner partial-week this has been. I'd just like to share the events and hopefully they will give you your good laugh for the day.
Sunday: We pull into the parking lot at church, Chad parks the car, a few comments are made about having to walk across the parking lot, and then we hear a sigh from the back seat and a complaint: "Oh great. This is going to be a pain in the a$$." Both my and Chad's eyes bugged out of our heads as we quickly demanded to know where the new vocabulary word had been learned. The culprit? George of the Jungle. A legnthy discussion followed on how we don't need to use that word, and gave her some acceptable substitutions. And then, if we continue to use such words, all movies will be taken away for an extended period of time. She said she was sorry and wouldn't do it again. We felt she was being genuine, so we were glad.
Monday: Doctor visits for Miri and Brock, who's coughs will just not let up! Brock diagnosed with RSV (again) and Miri is given an RSV test that comes back negative. While at the doctor Brock is climbing all over the exam room, standing up on a chair and nearly falls off. Thanks to mom reflexes, a potential disaster is averted. I have to add how sensitive and kind Ella is about her brother's and sister's feelings. She rememberd getting an RSV test a little over a year ago herself and when the nurse comes in to do Miri's she cowered in the corner, knowing how difficult this is going to be for Miri. I love how she loves them!
Tuesday: While doing my hair, the phone rings. I answer, forgeting to close my bathroom and bedroom door, providing a perfect window of opportunity for mischief making. I hang up only to find that the house is quiet. Too quiet. I find Brock sitting on my bathroom floor...holding a bottle of body wash...opened...all over his fingers...smeared around his mouth. I didn't think he had eaten much because the look on his face did not exactly say, "yummy!" Just to be sure, I call poison control. Brock is is normal self the rest of the day.
Wednesday: Brock discovers Ella's spray watter bottle. While I cook, Brock (in a matter of minutes) manages to drench his face and jammies, and I notice the hallway carpet feels damp. He thinks its halarious and is proud of his new skill.
Thursday: Outside, Brock discovers a pot still containing soil. He begins to play in it and I think, "What harm can this do? Boys get dirty." I take Miri inside, put her down, and come back outside to get Brock. I lean down to pick him up only to find that he has potting soil in his hair, on his hands, down the front of him, and caked around his mouth. As we are washing, he throws up. Once again, I am on the phone with poison control. While on the phone with them I look over at Brock and see that he is standing in a puddle of pink strawberry smoothie, leftover from our afternoon snack. He then decides to take off and tracks smoothie and soil all through the kitchen. As I'm cleaning that mess up, I remeber that I didn't put the baby gate up. And sure enough, Brock is in the kitchen, making an attempt to climb the stepladder which was leaning up against the wall. And it's only Thursday! Two more days to go still! But before you decide to call child services, I'd like to defend myself: I'm usually more put together than this! (Sorry, that's the best I could do right now!) I don't know what else to say. I suppose my husband said it best when he said that the kids have really let me have it this week.
But just when I'm not sure what to do with them anymore, they flash me a smile and my heart melts! I sure do love those silly kids! Miri is great, as always. (I'm sure her trouble-making days will arrive soon!) She is starting to smile at us and has become a bit more social. It is fun!
Wish me luck in surviving the rest of my week (Chad will be home, so I'll have re-enforcements) and hopefully next week will be better!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Welcome Miri!

So I know that Miri is officially 8 weeks old now and I still haven't had time to do a new post yet, but deal with it people! My days are so full of Miri feedings, Brock snack times, getting Ella ready for school, putting kids down for naps, cooking for the family, 10-15 diaper changes, baths, and a shower for myself, that I hardly have time for much else! Although I love to blog, it has definitely taken a backseat. The priorities are making sure the kids are clean, fed, and each get 5-10 minutes of one on one time with Mommy. If I happen to have any extra time, I try to get a quick workout for myself in and then start attacking the laundry and dishes at warp speed! (And to prove my point, I am sitting here at 2am writing this blog, although I probably won't get to finish it for at least another day or so.) It certainly is busy, but I'm learning to manage.

Since I haven't blogged since Miri's arrival, I'll share that story. And to save all of your stomachs, I'll just pick up at the part when we went to the hospital. We had a scheduled induction for the morning that she arrived, and I ended up waking up just a few minutes before our alarms were to go off, only to find that my water had broke! When we got the the hospital though, I still wasn't in labor, so they gave me some Pitocin. Once the contractions did start I called for the epidural. It didn't help much! Around lunchtime, my parents and sister Brenda arrived to check on us for a bit. They hung out for awhile and figured they would go see Ella and Brock and wait for us to call. We joked about them staying if it was time to push, but figured I'd still be a few more hours. Only a few seconds later I felt like it was that time! The nurse came in to check as my Dad and Brenda excused themselves and I was under strict orders to do absolutely no pushing until my doctor arrived. This was because she was nearly out. The doctor raced in a few minutes later, I gave 3 pushes right in a row, and Miri just kind of fell out. It was a fabulous way to have a baby; I highly recommend it!

Things continue to go well at home. Miri is a great baby who really enjoys sleeping for long stretches at night (again, something I highly recommend!). She eats well and has the cheeks, 2nd chin and thighs to prove it! She takes good naps and simply requests to be held every once in awhile. She is a FABULOUS baby! I keep saying that if I knew for sure that they would all be like her, I'd be more than willing to have 10 or 20 more! But since we don't think this is very realistic, I think we'll stick with the status quo for a few years!

Brock is happy with his baby sister. He loves her so much and gives her giant slobbery kisses all day long! When she cries, he tries to shush her and will even attempt to rock her. It really is cute. He surprises us every day with how much he understands, and how much he tries to get away with! He gets this adventurous look in his eye and smile on his face, and you know that he's up to something! Of course, with this desire to explore comes some not so fun know, the tantrums that are inevitable when we have to take away Ella's scissors from him, or close the bathroom door so that he doesn't play in the toilet again, or tell him no, he can't have cookies and m&m's for dinner. He can be a troublemaker, but he also has a mellow side. At least once a day, Chad or I will go to check on him and find him in his room, sitting quietly, looking at his books. Brock just LOVES his books. Of course I get a little sick of the same ones over and over, and am proud to say that I know "Old Hat, New Hat," "Pajamma Time," and "Snuggle Puppy" all by heart. But Chad and I both love that Brock loves to read so much.

Ella is doing very well in school and her reading skills are coming right along. She has had her frustrated moments with it but gets excited when we point out to her how much she has improved in just a matter of weeks. We had her parent/teacher conference just last week and she is above average on just about everything. She's also above average in the "talking a little too much at her table" department. There's a shock! She is also a tremendous helper at home. She sometimes gets frustrated that Brock and Miri both still need so much from Mom and Dad, but usually she is pretty understanding and ready to jump in and help. One of her favorite ways to help is to read with Brock or play "puppy" with him while I feed Miri. It always makes me laugh to see the two of them crawling around the floor, chasing each other, barking, or panting, tongues out and all! We are still trying to get over the shock of her transition from "little girl" to "tween" though. She chooses the Jonas Brothers over Princess now and tells us how Chad Dillon Cooper on the Disney is the handsomest Chad she knows. And then of course, she remembers that her dad's name is Chad and reluctantly adds him to the list.

Chad of course is not thrilled about many of these developments, but what father is? He's just hoping that she will give us a few more years before she brings home her first date! And between Ella, Brock and Miri, Chad doesn't have time for much else besides work. When he is home, he helps me as much as he can, so much that I wonder how I handle it all when he's NOT home! He was proud to be able to bless Miri at church last week, with my dad, Ian, Eric, Mark, and Chris. We were so happy to have so many Priesthood holders in our family that could participate. While it was a great day, know that those of you who could not be there were missed, Loyal and Javier especially!

For the moment, what are we looking forward to? Full nights of sleep from Miri, Brock turning 18 months old so that he can go to nursery at church, and Ella is always looking forward to the next play date. And we are looking forward to a trip to CA in June. My sister Brittany will be getting married to her long-time sweetheart, Mark, whom we love! When they are married, we are going to be able to have my entire family in the temple together for the first time and we know that those moments will be so special. To sit and be reminded of the love that God has for us and of the blessings He wants to share with us, will be beautiful. We miss you all and pray that God will be with each of you!