Thursday, February 21, 2013

Ode to Uno


Oh, Uno.

Oh, how we love thee, Uno.

The shuffle and snap of the cards,

The colors, the numbers, the Draw Twos,

(And especially Draw Fours).

We love to stack and to skip and to draw.

We love to yell “match!”

And beat everyone else to the pile.

We live to watch Anna get gigglier and gigglier as she draws

And draws

And draws

Her new cards.

We love to shout “Uno!”

And go out with a victorious Cheshire grin.

We love that we all like you

And we can all win.

But the very best part of you, Uno,

Is ice cream of us

When you are all through.


Tuesday, February 19, 2013


We’ve had ickies running through our house of late.  Nothing horrendous, thank goodness, but nothing particularly fun either.  Mostly just fevers and coughs and sore throats.  Erik caught it first, which is typical, then Anna, then Alyx.  And now I think Sean may have a touch of it.


I feel bad for Erik.  Because he is almost always the first one to come down with a bug, he is quarantined in my greatest efforts to avoid family-wide contamination.  Sometimes this is effective.  Sometimes not.  Once Alyx gets something I give up entirely on separation mostly because she will not tolerate a cuddle ban, and everybody else knows to wash their hands and not stick germy things in their mouths.


Still, it’s crummy for Erik.  He is the coolest, though, especially about stuff like that.  Love that boy.  I’m hoping we are through the ickies this winter and we can keep My Little Pony turned off until sometime next year (Alyx and Anna laid down and watched that for days).  I’m just grateful it was mild.  And I’m grateful it’s over (even if that is just for now).  And I’m grateful I got extra time with my kids (is it bad that I love it when they have to stay home?).  And I am overwhelmingly grateful I did not catch it.  Here’s to hoping for a healthy spring (and the rest of winter, of course). 


Sunday, February 17, 2013

Shelters 101

I believe the only thing Djeryd purchased at Scout Camp last year was book about surviving in all sorts of strange circumstances.  A couple of weeks ago my sweet boy pulled it out to expand his mind.  Within an hour he was tracking down both Sean and myself to see if he could use random materials in the yard and garage.  Since I am always curious to see what creation  he is thinking up I said “yes,” and waited patiently for this to be built:


Erik is almost always good for jumping on Djeryd’s various wagons and this was no exception.  He is an amazing support to his big brother, and Djeryd loves his companionship.  In a couple of days they had worked out the kinks, stabilized the poles, and added a tarp inside the shelter (so you did not have to lie on the grass).  Erik, of course, wanted to sleep in it.  If it was summer time, I would not bat an eye, but we were still in the midst of ickies being transferred from kid to kid and I was not about to introduce a new virus due to immune systems being compromised in the very cold night air.


I loved how they drug Sean out on a Sunday afternoon to get his stamp of approval.  The tent stayed up for a week, not getting much physical use, but a lot of self-esteem building.  I love it when my kids look at something they’ve made and feel that joy of having created something with their own brains and their own two hands.  The ability to create is a true gift. So go do something with it!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Junk Drawer Face-Lift

Around Christmas, while Sean perused the hard drive aisle at Fry’s, I found myself in the magazine section staring at an organizing magazine with the creator of iHeartOrganizing on the cover.  I could not wait to get home and check out this website.  I was hooked and have been delighted to be inspired virtually every time I’ve visited this space.

A couple of weeks ago I came across a post where she used cereal boxes and wrapping paper to convert a messy drawer into cheerful, organized bliss.  I gave it a whirl with the cereal boxes I had on hand.  I did not totally fill the drawer because I ran out of boxes, but I am rounding up more and looking for more drawer make-over opportunities throughout the house.  I’m loving my recycle bin lately. This project proved to be a quick, easy and inexpensive way to have a place for everything and put everything in its place.  (Sorry I do not have a before picture, but I assure you, it was a mess.)


Really fun.  Give it  a whirl.  You’ve got absolutely nothing to lose with this easy project.  And your drawer will be so pretty when you’re finished.  ;->

Friday, February 8, 2013


I got the idea to “Heart Attack” our family for Valentine’s Day over here.  I think we may have done this last year, but I honestly do not remember (a good reason to take more pictures, I think).  Anyway, last Monday night we all sat around the table (except Erik, who was sick on the couch) and wrote out our Valentine’s to one another.  Then we taped them on the wall for a little extra love this month.  I liked the idea so much we did it in my seminary class as well.  And let me tell you, some of those brought tears to my eyes.

Because the majority of my children do not have legible handwriting (which drives me absolutely crazy), I will transcribe the love they wanted to share with one other.

1-2013-2-7 Valentines and Drawer Organizers

Anna: I love Djeryd how he helps me sometime.

Erik: I love Dad because he makes good waffles.

Djeryd: I love Dad because no matter what he is always there for me.

Erik: I love Anna because she dances.

Anna: I love Erik how he is funny.

Anna: I love Alyx how she makes a big mess.

Djeryd: I love Mom because she will make anything or help make it even if she can’t eat it.

Anna: I love Dad because he makes funny magic tricks, like ones when it goes in my ear.

Happy Valentine’s Day

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Three Months – In a Nutshell

Any other year this post would have been broken up into several posts over the past few months.  But this is not any other year.  This is this year.  With this year’s challenges and opportunities.  And so rather than spending several posts trying to catch up on three months of our life, I have opted to quickly fill in and move on from where we are.

If you read the last post (written by my wonderful husband) you know that I spend every school day morning with some amazing teenagers teaching and learning with them the gospel of Jesus Christ as it has been restored in the latter days of the earth.  It is incredible and I love it.  It is also very demanding of time and energy and it has taken me a little while to get things figured out, thus the absence of blog posts.  But things are evening out and I’m ready (I think) to revisit my blog regularly. 

I’m sure there will be more posts about all of this, but for now, let’s recap.  ** Warning: Picture-Heavy Post. **01-DSC_0086

We had Thanksgiving at our house and took the opportunity to send a little Christmas love note to a relative on his mission.  You decide which picture is best.



Djeryd had a winter band concert and spent a lot of time practicing.  He really loves orchestral music, so band is not exactly his speed, but we are trying to convince him to stick it out until he can join orchestra in high school.


Anna is turning into quite the little artist (Djeryd, too, for that matter), and astonished me with this lovely picture she drew to fill up a completely blank box on the front of her folder.


I think this picture represents the only homemade gifts  created by these two hands of mine this Christmas.  And I barely got these little pillowcases finished as it was.


Sean took the entire week of work off between Christmas and New Year’s.  It was heaven to have him home.  We soaked up every minute (and I reveled in watching movies until way too late every night and sleeping in as late as possible every morning).


Djeryd made a Lego Ninjago board for a young friend of his.  He also created cards and bargained for Ninjago minifigs from his cousin all to make a complete set for his friend.  I loved watching him put his heart into this.


And his heart into this . . .


The grandkids completed another successful run of the annual Nativity.  I love this tradition.


Erik’s grandmother knit scarves, hats and mittens for all of the kids this year.  How’s that for love?  Believe me, we felt it.


(I tried not to include any extraneous photos, but this one was too cute to leave out.)


Life returned to normal as soon as Christmas was over.  Around here that means back to military drills and digging out the war trench in the back yard.  They all take it so seriously.  It cracks me up. 


In  my three-month-picture-dump I came across a few instances of my camera being commandeered.  As annoying as this can sometimes be, today I found it endearing.


Last, but not least, here is the only picture I have of Erik’s Pinewood Derby this year.  What?  You don’t understand?  He made this board to display his car when it was finished.  That’s it.  End of story.  I was feeling that taking pictures was futile since I would never have the time to even look at them, so I didn’t take a single photograph after this point three or four weeks ago.


I am not making any promises about this little blog, but I’ve missed having a record of our family life.  For that reason I will visit and post more often.  It goes too fast.  Too many memories are already long gone because I didn’t take the time to record them.  I don’t feel guilty.  I have been doing my best and that’s what counts and it is what it is.  But now it will be better.  ;->

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