Monday, January 28, 2013

Cold Weather

It has been very cold... luckily getting warmer.  That means that I feel bad for our cat.  She's stuck in a cold garage or out in the snow without her sister cat to keep her warm.  We started to let her sleep in the bathroom with her kitty litter at night.  The first three days there wasn't a mess.  I went to clean all the bathrooms today and I found....

Paw prints on the mirror, paw prints all over the counter and the sink, kitty litter all over the shower and floor.  It took me forever to clean!

Wetting the bed

Wetting the bed accident = more laundry = exploding teddy bear = more laundry

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Ponies Ada's way

While I was making dinner, my friend Elizabeth went to play My Little Ponies with Ada.  First they were doing their hair and "putting them to bed" in Ada's Pony Castle.  Then Ada would shake the castle and say, "Earthquake!"  Then they'd do it all over again.  Does that sound familiar Janelle?

Fun day

What a fun day we've had.  Despite the bad air and at least 3 of us having sinus/throat problems we've been able to do some fun things.  Slept in, fun.  Went to Home Depot where the kids got free popcorn, fun.  Watching Ada hold Evelyn's hand walking down the sidewalk, fun.  Taking the kids to the track, fun.  Dinner and games with our friends Elizabeth and Jason, fun. 

I've enjoyed our day.  It's too bad that I'm ready for bed now.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Scrapbooks

I don't go crazy and get really fancy with scrapbooks, but I do like to have a physical print of the best pictures in case we ever lose the digital ones... so I make a yearly scrapbook for each of the kids.  Usually in Jan/Feb.  I've been doing this for the last 8 years for my family and have done it really since I was 16.  But, this year I'm struggling.  I'm trying to make myself care about which pictures go into the books instead of just picking them to finish my project.  I got Ada's done and I'm half way through picking out pictures for Sam's... but I sure am dragging my feet on it.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

The Circus

We got to go to the Circus last night.  My dad had found free passes for the kids and we all went.  It was fun.  I honestly didn't know what they were going to do but their clowns were hilarious and it was hard to watch people doing dangerous things.  Thanks Grandpa!  It was a fun night out!

It was fun to see how much Sam loved the bike stunts and Ada liked the tigers and the horses (and the dogs riding horses).  Evelyn like the loud music and got to dance alot. 

You could definitly tell where they make their money from.  The ticket sales probably cover the venue, but EVERYTHING else was expensive.  You could ride a pony, camel, or elephant for 1 ticket... and it was $10 per ticket... so for my 3 kids to ride one animal it would have cost $30.  Plus the cotton candy and any consession sales.  This first picture is Ada when she found out that she wouldn't be able to ride the pony... and honestly?  You have a choice between an elephant, pony and camel and she chooses a pony?  Haha... she must like them. 






Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Evelyn

This little baby girl is curious, loving, happy and always glad to join in the fun.  She is always first to volunteer while I play with settings on my camera.
 


Sammy

Sammy has a very creative mind.  He likes to make things and wants them to stay made.  He gets upset if Evelyn takes apart his lego creations.  He loves puzzles and computers.  He's a very enthusiastic Fencer.   



Ada

Ada is such an enthusiastic and happy girl.  Always ready to have an adventure and to be friends with anyone.  An amazing big sister and pretty mature for a 5 year old.  She's learning to not cry as often at bumps and bruises and is loving learning how to roller skate. 



What's cuter than two sisters?

Seriously, what is cuter than two sisters?  Two sisters in matching dresses that were made my their grandma for my sister and I!  Aren't they cute?




Sunday, January 20, 2013

Thoughts on baptism

Our Relief Society lesson was on baptism today.  I had several stories and thoughts but none fit quite right into the comment parts of the lesson, so I'm going to give my own comments here on my blog where a whole 5 people read it.

Baptism to me means love, comfort, hope and excitement.  I was lucky on the day that I was baptized.  I was surrounded by friends and family.  I remember my Uncle Chris and his family being there, my Wilcox grandparents, my piano teacher Erma Frodshum.  My best friend (Jami Higham) and I were baptized on the same day so Jami's grandma made us matching dresses.  "My" Vietnamese family was also there.  (My grandparents were sponsoring a Vietnamese family that was trying to escape Vietnam.  They lived with my family.  There were six of them.  A mother, father, three children and a sister.  I was closest to Doa and Lin.  It was fun to show them snow, teach them American customs, watch them go to college, watch as their 16 year old grew taller than the rest of the family.  They bought live ducks, kept them in our garage and cooked them for us for dinner.)  Some of the family (one of them was Doa) had talked to the LDS missionaries and had wanted to be baptized.  I was so blessed to be baptized along with other very special people.  My mom had sewed me a new skirt for afterwards and had braided my hair.  My dad practiced with me to make sure that I knew what to do.  I remember my dad taking my hand as I stepped into the font.  I could tell he was so proud. My mom helped me change into my clothes afterwards.  I have a vague recollection of my Grandpa Wilcox helping confirm me and give me the gift of the Holy Ghost. 

At my baptism, I promised to remember the sacrifice that Jesus Christ has made for each one of us.  I promised to obey the commandments that the Lord has given us.  I promised to repent over and over again throughout my life.  I felt loved, hopeful for the future and excitement in my big day. 

There are other baptism stories that are neat in themselves.  My mom was baptized in the Salt Lake Tabernacle on Temple Square.  My dad was baptized in Ethiopia.  He always joked that he was baptized in a river full of crocodiles.  (It was close.  A pool next to a river full of crocodiles.)  I wanted to tell a couple of baptism stories from my mission to Ecuador, I'll tell one. 

It is about Amparito.  Her husband was a member and attended church weekly.  She was not and had no desire to be.  She told her husband that she would listen to the missionaries but you could tell that she was not happy to be there.  We taught her about many things.  I don't think we followed the discussion manual very much because she seemed to need love more than anything, so we taught about love.  We talked about how God loved each of us.  When we talked about baptism I thought she would never listen to us again.  Instead she cried and told us about her baby that had died years before that she hadn't had a chance to baptize in her church.  She was angry at God for letting her baby die and in a deep depression because she thought her baby was gone forever to a place that she was afraid that she would go to.  We talked about how babies are saved by their pure innocence and that her baby could still be hers.  She gradually stopped seeing the anger and started opening up to her husband and life.  On her scheduled baptism day the font wouldn't fill so the ward missionary jumped into the cistern and fed us buckets of water which we carried to the font.  It took two hours.  Some of her friends came, her husband came, but she still didn't come with her son.  I was worried.  1/2 an hour after the time we were supposed to start my companion and I started the 40 minute walk to her house to see what was going on.  15 minutes into it we found her scrambling and trying to hurry her son.  She was on her way, just late.  I didn't see her for two years after I was moved from the area.  Before I got married I took my sister Janelle to visit some people there.  We drove around and tried to find as many of my dear friends who hadn't moved or that I hadn't forgotten how to find their houses.  We found Amparito's house almost on accident.  She lit up.  I'd never seen such happiness on her face.  We cried and hugged.  It took time but you could see that she was happy, comforted, and hopeful.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

My helper

Ada's standing job is to help me out in the mornings.  I'm not much of a morning person and my kids are arranged so that I'm okay with mornings so far.  Sam wakes up about 7:30-8 gets himself dressed and we go get him some breakfast.  I get Ada's breakfast ready while I'm there because she usually gets up about the time we're in the kitchen.  Then I get Evelyn's sippy cup ready and turn it over to Ada.  I eat and take a shower.  *If* Evelyn wakes up while I'm showering then Ada's job is to get her out of bed and give her the sippy cup and get her some cereal.  If she doesn't then I do it.  I love it when Ada does it though... it's so cute to hear them giggling and playing.  And fun to see that Ada has willingly helped.  Especially since Evelyn insists on giving anyone who gets her out of bed both her blankets and any toys that she'd slept with to carry around.  Ada will carry them all the way to wherever Evelyn wants and drop them there.  It's so fun to see those sisters work together.

Overheard

I was driving the kids home from our fencing class and this was their conversation...

Allen - "I'm taking karate lessons!  I'm already a blackbelt!" (He just started a couple weeks ago)
Me - "So what are the belt colors?"
Allen - "First you start with out one, then white, and then red and black."
Sammy - "I like red."
Allen - "Then you should come do karate too!"
Sammy - "No, I don't know karate. I'm just Sammy and I like red."

I love that kid.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Sledding with the Wilcox's

 We got to go sledding finally!  We've been sick and before that there wasn't enough snow.  We went with my parents and my sister Sharon.  Sam did a lot better this year.  He played in it, ate it, built in it, slid down the hill in it... still didn't like the sled very much but overall I think he had fun.  Last two years he just cried the whole time.  Ada was Miss Adventure, pretty much like always.  She figured out that if she went down backwards then she wouldn't get any snow in her face.  Sharon kept her in a supply of different sleds, and she even tried the very big hill a couple of times... wrecked twice, but just got back on and kept going.  She cried when it was time to go.  Evelyn went down with me twice... got a face full of snow once... and was ready to go sit in the car with Grandpa until we were done.  She was super excited to see a slide nearby.  She kept pointing and saying, "Look, slide!"








Silly Kids

Eating their Christmas candy

Cousin Anya turns 5!

Icicle on the back of the house... we took a picture before I knocked it down.

Puzzle with Joey.

Josh, Evelyn and Arwen... Evelyn's other baby.

The three girls playing with Anya's new toys.

"I'm not tired mom."


Dance time...

This is Rachel's Merida costume... Ada was in love and Rachel was a very good sport to let Ada wear it so long.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Chicken recipes

I love chicken.  It's probably my favorite of the meats.... and I especially love the homemade Teriyaki chicken that we've made before and..... someone shared a  yummy recipe for swiss cheese chicken on Allrecipes.com.  I did change a few things so here it is:

8 chicken breasts
8 slices of swiss cheese
1 can of cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup of bread crumbs
1 tsp Rosemary
1 TBLS minced garlic
1/4 cup water

layer in pan, cook 350 for (dang... I can't remember if it was 25 or 45 minutes.... that would make a difference.)

YUM!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Evelyn's first prayer

In an effort to teach our kids how to pray, we start by saying a prayer and having them repeat it.  Evelyn is a girl of very few words.  Even though I've heard her say a variety of words there are very few that she will use over and over.  Here was Evelyn's first prayer:

Me- "Evelyn say 'Heavenly Father'"
Evelyn- "Phone"
Me-"We thank thee for this day"
Evelyn-"Phone"
Me-"Thank thee for our friends"
Evelyn-"Phone"
Me-"Please bless the food"
Evelyn-"Food!"
Me-"And in the name of Jesus Christ"
Evelyn-"Phone"
Me-"Amen"
Evelyn-"Men"

Not quite the huge success in mimicking that I'd hoped, but at least we know what was on her mind... phones, food and Men. 

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Salvation and Self Esteem

I've had several conversations about weight lately.  I want to put down my thoughts about it. 

Your salvation is not hinged upon how much you weigh or what you look like.  Having said that, your ability to be active does help you in assisting in your Heavenly Father's work and looking nice can portray who you are on the inside.  But again.... your SALVATION is not hinged upon your weight or your looks.  The entire purpose of this life is to gain a body.... check, earn salvation..... check (given through Christ's death and resurrection, earn (or learn) Eternal Life.... in progress, and help others to earn their Eternal Life.... also in progress.  In my experience, you don't have to weigh less or look gorgeous for any of these.  In my experience, as you learn your Eternal life you automatically have a better self esteem.  It's all about where your focus lies.

Do you think that Joseph Smith Jr will not gain Eternal life because he had a pot belly?  What about Brigham Young?  Why do we look down on ourselves when we are only doing what we were sent to do?  We gained a body.  Some bodies are thinner, some not.  Some bodies require more self control.  Some spirits require more self control.  Some bodies are broken or deformed.  But we gained one... check.  Now on to the Eternal Life bit. 

If you'd like to learn more about the Eternal Life bit.... I'd recommend listening and applying this talk.

Jer's Christmas and New Years vacation

Since we all had that yucky flu that's going around... Jer's week off between Christmas and New Years was timely but less eventful than we had planned.  It looked a lot like this (pretty much 17 out of the 20 grandkids that we visited with were sick during vactions):


We visited both my parents and Jer's because we were ALL sick anyways.  It also looked a lot like this:


With just a little of this thrown in (We bought this Toy Story train last year but had meat to get the Duplo one for Sam for Christmas... made a mistake and got the lego one instead.  Instead of giving it to Sam... we kept it for Jer. It is a cool train):


New Years Eve was games, chocolate, and gabbing.  While it doesn't rival the dance party of last year I think everyone was glad to laze around a little.  Maybe next year we'll avoid the sick part of it, but we still had fun.