Monday, December 29, 2008

the goods

Can you tell who was excited to have the snow melt?
Can you believe there is a smile on that toothless face even though one side of the track didn't work?
Who would have thought Santa could find a tree house?
Can a girl really have too many dolls?

Take down starts today. Then on to my favorite month, January. Fresh start. Can't wait.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The results are in

Woodward baby #5 is a
Happy news.

Though I'm looking forward to the follow-up ultrasound in 8 weeks to check the kidneys (just like Kate) when she puts on some baby fat and looks a little less alien and a little more baby.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Weekend Snapshots

Dear Santa, I don't like you but I still want you to bring me a doll.
(Luckily we got a better shot earlier in the day when we went to visit Santa)

Monkey see, monkey do.
(of course I had to take a picture)

Brown paper packages tied up with string...
My solution to keep curious hands (mostly Kate) from the presents.
I knew there was a reason for all that empty space above the cabinets.

Chandler and Brian singing at the ward Christmas party.
Spectacular performance. Of course I'm a little biased.
A new favorite Christmas song.
(We'd tried all week long trying to convince Chandler to sing with him, bribing him with anything imaginable. Finally, Saturday morning I asked him if he'd sing if his grandmas came. "Yes." If only I knew it would be so simple. Why do I always forget it's the simple things that work?)

Looks like my wish for no school isn't going to happen.
I'm off to perfect some Christmas treats. Warm wishes.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Need some canvas for your wall?

My sister tuned me into this deal of a deal here.

I think these will look smashing on the wall along my stairs.

I'm what you call an amateur. Or actually probably less than that. Cheapskate is probably a better label. I know they don't all look the same, but that's look I was going for.

Monday, November 17, 2008

I'm Back

Just when I thought it would never end, it did. Round-the-clock gross feeling that is. A lot of things have been neglected except for the all important Christmas shopping, did that all online 3 weeks ago (best ever).

I just uploaded pictures from my camera for the first time in about a month.

So here you have Halloween 2008 which I'm sure is just what you wanted to see today.

The witch and the last minute switcheroo to an Indian

and last years Christmas presents turned Halloween costumes, good idea if you ask me.

Now, on to more current events.

is a self proclaimed writer. Here's a recent composition I liked (misspellings and all):

I love the word cougar because thats my favorite football team. BYU! My favowrite BYU football players are, Max Hall, Brice M., Harvey Anga. Max Hall is the number one qarterback in the state of Utah. Harvey is runing back. Cougars are powerful and are meat eating mashins. I love cougars.

Does it get any better than that? Well I'm a little biased I guess. His Christmas gifts to siblings and other deserving loved ones is going to be an illustrated "story" or encylopedia entry as I like to think of them, customized according to each person's interests.

Carson is happily back in school this week after a week long sabatical thanks to cancellation of Kindergarten classes for parent-teacher conferences. For a 6 year old this boy knows how to help, let me tell you! Dishes? check. Laundry? check. Toilets? check. Vacuuming? check. He'll even change Kate's wet diapers and do anything to meet any other needs she has. It's not surprising that she has begun calling for "Carson! Carson!" when she wakes up in the mornings and from naps. Everyone needs a Carson in their family.

is continuing his mission to help me master patience and other Christlike attributes. Thankfully his humor keeps things in check. Comments like:

I have the nicest bedroom in the family because I'm the nicest one in the house. When I was mean I had plain walls. (mmm, what's changed)
How ‘bout if tomorrow when I wake up it’s my birthday?
When I grow up I’m gonna be a mean super hero and help the bad guys.
I need my pet.
If you give me a cookie, I’ll give you eleventy twelve dollars.
Ella’s a good cook. (after she masterfully arranged the play food on plates)
Can I borrow this map so I can find the airport?

is in the middle of a vocabulary explosion. Except of course when you prompt her to say something. She's become very good at verbally discipling her brothers though her jabber isn't always coherent. I think she'll make a great tattle-tale. Like any other girl she's obsessed with all things baby, princess, pretty and domestic (play kitchen of course)and I couldn't be happier!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Halloweens past

Mishawaka, Indiana. 1st year of grad school.
Sweet baby Carson was born. (I could totally
have him again.) If I remember correctly we had to
force little bear into his costume. If only we
could have seen into the future and known
he would one day become an avid costume-

South Bend, Indiana. The best thing about this
picture is Chandler wet his pants while I was
taking their pictures in the cold, musty stairway
of our South Bend apartment complex.
( I was so mad!)

Puyallup. Ok, those pumpkins look really stupid. And
Chandler is an elephant. I tried to get all homemade
that year and came up with that pitiful ensemble.
Does our house look pink to you? It really did in the
sunlight. It made me sick every time I drove up
to it. People told me it didn't look pink, but I know
they were lying.

Mesa, AZ. Enjoying our 1st balmy Halloween.
This is about when Baden started his torturous
screaming. Still waiting for it to stop.

It's pretty sweet when you go to Sea World and buy a silly hat your child insists on, pull it out at Halloween and throw on an oversized orange shirt and call it a costume)

It would appear that 2006 was a hard year to pin all the kids down for a picture together. We enjoyed our 2nd Halloween in AZ with our friends and neighbors in the cul-de-sac where they dished out hot dogs instead of chocolate.

And last year. All together, but not looking at the camera.
This is so much the story of our life.

Look again tomorrow for more costume repeats and a cute little witch.

Just the facts, mam

Wow it's been awhile. Not only does the laundry, cleaning, paperwork and grocery shopping go by the wayside when one finds herself nauseas, but blogging does as well. But, Brenda has summoned me from my hibernation. 5 weird facts about me. Maybe they aren't weird, I don't know. Can you relate?

I hate surprises. That's why I always, always look at the back of the book so I can rest assured all will turn out alright. Ok, ok, I've also been known to take a peek at my Christmas presents. But that was in my younger days.

I think going to the hospital to have a baby is the funnest. I seriously get a little jealous when women I know go to have a baby. The anticipation, excitement and I love me an epidural.

I totally fake sleep in the middle of the night when a baby cries or a child comes in our room. I know this is usually the husband's job to fake, but I've reversed the roles. (hope Brian's not reading)

During the heat of the summer when I've had the AC on in the car, after I've arrived at my destination I like to just sit there for awhile as the car heats up. Love it.

I have to paint "toenails" on my pinky toes because mine are basically non-existent. That must be weird because when anyone notices, they say, "that's so weird."

Now, if you find yourself wondering what to do when your husband leaves on a Thursday night to help with an "emergency move" consider yourself tagged.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Boy humor

Grandma gifted us 3 whoopee cushions in her annual Halloween box. Only one has survived. I've spotted the remaining yellow boy giggle buster on Brian's office chair (since the yellow against the black won't give it away), on guests' seats at the dinner table, the couch, under pillows and so forth.

Today, a sneaky boy placed it in Kate's high chair.

I'm still laughing...

Friday, October 3, 2008

The Prophet Speaks

My very favorite semi-annual event is this weekend. General Conference. I can hardly wait. A professor I had one year at BYU challenged our class to have 4 things that we had questions about and were seeking answers to, and promised that we would hear the answers in General Conference. And of course I did, so I have made it a habit to mentally, if not physically write down what I need direction on so I can listen for and recognize inspiration as it comes. It is a blessing to hear the Lord's Prophet and Apostles speak. In this day and age there are so many ways to particitpate. Internet, radio, TV as well as the written word in a matter of days. I think of the people in ancient times who traveled many miles and pitched their tents to hear a prophet speak. I imagine the enthusiasm and committment they had in their desire to know God's will through His chosen prophet. Our prophet today President Thomas S. Monson is the prophet chosen for our day. So this weekend we will be "pitching our tents" towards our television and hear God's servents deliver to us the messages He would have us hear. Isn't that amazing?

Chandler has requested a breakfast casserole on Sunday morning (because he can't stop thinking about it?? I only hope I can stand to make it!)

And because children get squirmy and have a tendency to lose focus here is something that you might want to print off for your young ones.

Brian's aunt posted some on our family website that I can't link, but if you'd like them email me and I'll send them to you.

Have a spiritual weekend!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Yes, it's true!
Adding another star to the family.
[Exciting news that will be even more exciting when I don't feel so crummy.]

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A Recipe

I'm kicking off the cool Fall weather with a favorite recipe which happens to the best pumpkin bars I've ever had. A friend from Arizona was kind enough to share this recipe with me. Absolutely delectable.

Pumpkin Spice Bars

2 cups flour
1 cup oil/applesauce (I go for the oil)
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 eggs
1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin

Mix together and pour into a greased 11x17 inch pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.
Cool and frost. (Even better frozen!)

2 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup butter
8 ounces cream cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla

Chandler tried to convince me to let him have some for breakfast. I said no, but from the looks of the pan I think he did anyway I guess they complement apple spice oatmeal fairly well.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Today was the day to tackle the 6 boxes of peaches on my dining room table. As of now I have 4 down and 2 to go. I ran out of lids, so I get a reprieve until tomorrow. I think canning is like child birth. You forget how horrible it is until it's time to do it again, but in the end it is all worth it. How's that analogy?

Have you ever neglected the syrup boiling on the stove for so long that it turns into rock hard candy/caramel-like substance? Lucky.
(after most had been emptied down the drain)

Yes, I wanted to cry. And then, when I turned on the water in the pot it splattered all over. Hot, messy, instantly hard spatters. I hate splatters.
Not only did I neglect the syrup on the stove, I neglected the children. No lunch. So they snacked: on dry Corn Chex, caramel corn from Sunday, cheese sticks and whatever else they could reach. Meanwhile, they had an I Love Lucy marathon all afternoon. Before that though, I asked Chandler to give Kate a bath. With strict instructions to stay by her the whole time because children drown all the time in bath tubs. That was news to him. I scared him into watching her closely in the bath. I thought I'd bought myself at least 30 minutes of Kate-free time. No such luck. Not 8 minutes later and she was back under foot. Pulling the stuff out of the cupboards. They even got her dressed. I just knew all boys were colorblind. Shirt is backwards too. I should mention that Brian took her along to Carson's soccer practice, which was all fine and dandy until I asked if she got out of the car. Of course he told me. I couldn't leave her inside! Oh my goodness. So there's the explanation for those who saw her, it wasn't a fashion statement afterall.
Then this evening as I'm upstairs getting out of the shower, Chandler rushes in telling me that Kate burnt her fingers. Sure enough. She opened the oven while our gormet frozen pizza was baking and burned her fingers. Brian was running cold water over her little fingers while the aligator tears fell. We then remembered what my Home-Ec sister taught us. Mustard for burns. That did the trick for sweet Kate. All better now. So file that away for a day you need it. Miracle cure, seriously.

I feel better now. Good night.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


What do you do for lunch?

Do you make lunch on at least 4 separate occasions like I do most every day?
  1. Chandler's lunch in the morning
  2. Baden's (1st) lunch at 10 am
  3. Lunch for Carson at 11 am before going to Kindergarten
  4. Lunch for Baden (2nd) and Kate after Carson is dropped of at school and before nap
I'll usually reserve my lunching for during naps which makes for 5 lunch times!

Is this one of those thing that I need to "enjoy" because I'll be sad when I don't have to make 43 lunches a day?

I don't think so.

Can't we just skip from breakfast to dinner?

There's got to be an easier way.

Can you help me?

What do you fix for lunch?

I need your ideas.

Do you like lunch?

Friday, September 12, 2008

Family Life Line

Every once in awhile I read or hear something that encourages me to keep on keeping on. Earlier this week I received a gem in my inbox on family prayer. I know there is a protective power in prayer both spiritual and physical, that our families need and are blessed by. I know that as we kneel in prayer each morning before the boys head out the door for school and pray that they will make wise choices, will be watched over, that they will learn and understand what they are taught, I am comforted and know that they each are as well. Read the following story and you will likewise be encouraged to keep on keeping on.

James E. Faust, "The Lifeline of Prayer," Ensign, May 2002, 60-61

"The Savior told us, 'Pray in your families unto the Father, always in my name, that your wives and your children may be blessed' (3 Nephi 18:21). In our day, the Church urges us to have family prayer every night and every morning. . . .

"Family prayer is a powerful and sustaining influence. During the dark days of World War II, a 500-pound bomb fell outside the little home of Brother Patey, a young father in Liverpool, England, but the bomb did not go off. His wife had died, so he was rearing his five children alone. He gathered them together at this very anxious time for family prayer. They 'all prayed . . . earnestly and when they had finished praying, the children said: "Daddy, we will be all right. We will be all right in our home tonight."

" 'And so they went to bed, imagine, with that terrific bomb lying just outside the door half submerged in the ground. If it had gone off it would have destroyed probably forty or fifty houses and killed two or three hundred people. . . .

" 'The next morning the . . . whole neighborhood was removed for forty-eight hours and the bomb was finally taken away. . . .

" 'On the way back Brother Patey asked the foreman of the A. R. P. Squad: "Well, what did you find?"

" ' "Mr. Patey, we got at the bomb outside of your door and found it ready to explode at any moment. There was nothing wrong with it. We are puzzled why it did not go off" ' (Andre K. Anastasiou, in Conference Report, Oct. 1946, 26). Miraculous things happen when families pray together."


Thursday, September 11, 2008

Afternoons around here

What's that Baden? You want to watch a movie in your closet? With your blankets and your kangaroo? And you want me to turn the lights off and shut the closet door?
Mmm, let me think about that for about a half a second.

(said really quietly, if he even has the slightest inkling that I intend for him to sleep, he's out of there in no time.)

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

18 months

Climbing on top of the table
Getting exactly what she wants
Feeding herself

Diaper changes
Sacrament meeting
Getting out of the bath

Dolls & stroller
Play kitchen

Keeping clothes in her drawers
Getting off the table

Coming inside
Brothers bugging her

Friday, September 5, 2008


We'll be in Seattle tomorrow to cheer on our Alma Matter.
I'll be the first to admit, I don't watch much of the game. I'm more of a people watcher.

How well do you know BYU football?
Better than these folks?

Wednesday, September 3, 2008


(my sisters and I, August 2008. I know what you're thinking. How did she [me] get so short?)

A blast from my past emailed me tonight. She'd looked at my blog, but didn't see much proof that it was mine because pictures of me, on my blog are lacking. So this is me all dolled up.

And this is me, after canning 60 quarts of tomato juice in 2 nights. How's that for keepin' it real?

And just for you Katy, comments open...

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

First Day of School Part II

Here he is, Carson, in all his Kindergarten glory.
We're going to pretend that this was taken before his first day of Kindergarten (the whole hour and ten minutes)this afternoon. When in reality it's after because I forgot to put the battery back in the camera when I went to drop him off.

Lest he be forgotten, this is Baden who requested I also pick him up in front of the neighbor's house on my way to get the boys this afternoon. Preschool starts next week.

The boys had a great day from what I can tell. I've continued the tradition that my mom had of videotaping us when we came home from our first day of school. Chandler gave a few details, and Carson just sat there in silence with a little grin (just like his Uncle Devin). So there you have it, I know you were all waiting on pins and needles. Ok, maybe not you, but Grandmas and Grandpas were.

And now I'll just enjoy the best part of school starting.
Peace and quiet at 8:30pm.

First Day of School Part I

It's a windy, cooler and not so summery out there today which almost makes it easier to send the boys to school. If they can't be outside playing, they might as well be at school. Don't you agree?

We always had a pictures of all the siblings (school age and not) in front of the school, so as not to break tradition. Here is ours.

The new 2nd grader doing a forced pose in front of the Ruth Livingston sign. He will surely become less compliant posing here in the coming years.

I think he's finally gotten excited about starting school again.

Stay tuned for Part II chronicling Carson's first day of (afternoon) Kindergarten and 7 minutes he'll spend there.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

O be wise

It came to me in a moment of inspiration a couple nights ago as I was thinking about the boys returning to school and the 'fresh start' that seems to accompany the beginning of a new school year: Hold a family home evening lesson centered around the scripture :
O be wise, what can I say more?

Elder Ballard gave a general conference talk on the very same scripture. As I read the first couple of paragraphs I was even more convinced that it would be the prefect topic for us to teach our children before they start school.

All day Monday I'm thinking how I can pull it all together and keep the children's attention.
And then it comes to me. Candy.

And so, on Monday eve after the formalities of the opening of our meeting,
I presented a bowl of Swedish Fish.
So hard to decide.
They all pick one (or two).

Then I tell them there are yellow, green, orange and red fish in the bowl.
I give them a minute to decide which color they would like.
They announce the which color they want and take a fish.
So much easier to take when you know what your decision is ahead of time.

(you see where I'm getting with this?)

We discuss how it is important to decide now what we will do when we are faced with choices.
It is much easier to take a stand on something if we have already decided what we will do.
We talked about how we are blessed to have standards to live by.
They help us make wise choices.

Next, the "test."
Typical hypothetical scenarios.
I'm happy to report they passed with flying colors.

The lesson ended by each son receiving a father's blessing from their father.
A source of comfort for the child.
And their mother.

Now school can begin.

Monday, August 25, 2008


We said goodbye to Elder Lybbert yesterday after he bore a tender and sincere testimony of Christlike attributes. He has been well prepared to serve a mission.

Yes, there were tears (Chandler cried for 2 hours last night) . But there is nothing we'd rather have him do. He is on the Lord's errand now. We couldn't be happier. Not only is he doing what he needs to do. He's doing what he wants to do. The people in Texas are lucky to have him.

You can read up on Andrew's mission experiences in the T.H.E. Mission for the next two years here.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Last Weekend of the Summer

Where did the time go? I'm happy to say it's been a fun and busy summer. But, we have one last thing to check off our list. Visit to the library. We haven't been once, I guess we've been playing too much, well, that and taking Kate to a place with thousands of books on bookshelves just waiting to be thrown to the ground doesn't sound like much fun to me. At all. I think I'll have all the boys go tomorrow afternoon when the Miss Kate is sleeping. That sounds much better.

I read this article several weeks ago and it keeps coming back to me. I am determined to make the most of each day. Some days and moments will surely take a little more effort and patience. Will you join me?

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Thursday, August 21, 2008