The greatest thing about having kids…

My sister-in-law Heather, has a lovely theory about what the greatest thing about having kids is.  I have to say, I think I agree.  She says the greatest thing about having kids is finding out what matters the absolutely most to them, and then taking it away!  🙂  Yesterday was a hard day for the children in our house.  When it came time for Kayla to go to pre-school, she started to flip out because she didn’t want to leave her friend Grace’s house.  She ended up hitting me, which in turn got her a nice hard spank as a consequence.  She then was refusing to go, so I got to threaten to take away candy AND TV.  Needless to say, she left without a further word.  Last night it was Garion’s turn.  He came home from school and had his afternoon snack.  Which, on a side note, takes him FOREVER to eat.  I think he uses it as a stalling method so he doesn’t have to start his homework.  After his snack, he got started right away on his homework.  He did his journal writing without a single complaint and he worked hard to keep it legible and put spaces between the words.  It was great.  He even wrote a whole page when the assignment was only half a page.  He then had to move on to his spelling list.  All he had to do was write the words 3 times each.  Which is a break because I usually make him write them 5 times each.  After I “thought” he had started I went upstairs to keep an eye on the girls who were in the bath and to clean the bathrooms and do some laundry.  I came down an hour later and not only had he only written one of his words, he had his friend over who was sitting at the table joking and laughing with him.  Over the next 45 minutes I gave him 3 different warnings to get his work done or his friend would have to leave.  After the 3rd warning, I told Tyler he had to leave so Garion could do his homework.  At this point, Garion completely broke down in tears and said he hadn’t had any time to play at all that day.  I told him that wasn’t my  fault because if he had done his words right away like I asked him to, he would have been done and playing a LONG time ago.  He didn’t like that.  He walked over to his shoes, kicked them at me (at which point I told him to go to his room) , and then ran up stairs saying he wasn’t going to give me kisses anymore, ever again when he leaves in the mornings for school.  Once he was in his room, he ripped all his covers off his bed and then sat there for another hour crying.  Once things calmed down and he talked with Jason and apologized to me, we tried his homework again.  For 40 minutes after dinner he sat there.  At the end, he had written 3 more words and half of them were spelled wrong.  So the end of the story is, he is grounded from friends today and has double spelling and reading to do, since it didn’t happen yesterday.  The best part of it all is that he woke up happy and ready for his consequence and didn’t complain at all when I reminded him of it.  He wants his friends back as soon as possible!

Leverage is a beautiful thing as a parent. 🙂

Lessons Learned

Garion had an experience over the weekend I wanted to blog about, but forgot yesterday.  He was in charge of taking care of our neighbors dogs over the weekend while they went away for the holiday.  He had to let them out 4 times a day, feed and water them and then feed the fish at night.  I assumed he was old enough to do it without my supervision, but there are always extenuating circumstances!  Thursday, as we were trying to load the car and leave for our families house, he went over to take care of the dogs.  Without my knowledge, his two little sisters followed him.  I took care of the dogs that night and Jason helped the next morning since Garion was staying the night at his cousins house.  Friday afternoon, he went back to finish the job.  He came home and said everything was fine.  After my neighbor got home late Friday night, she called me to inform me that he couch had been drawn on with marker and apparently the dogs had peed somewhere and when Garion wiped it up with a paper towel, instead of throwing it away in a garbage can, he placed it on the table on top of a needle work Julie’s great grandmother had made.  Which is now stained yellow and smelly.  I didn’t know what to say.  The next morning, I asked the kids about it and Garion said he couldn’t find a trash can and instead of bringing it to our house to throw away, he placed it on the table.  He agrees that next time he needs to find a garbage.  The marker on the couch was another mystery.  Garion didn’t know anything about it.  But interestingly enough, Kayla did.  Apparently, when the girls followed him over Thursday morning, Brynn had a marker in her hands and decided to decorate the couch.  Garion wasn’t watching her even though he knew she was in the house,and Kayla didn’t feel it was necessary to tell me.  I guess that’s what to expect from a 4 year old.  I was really proud of Garion though because he got the cleaners we have on hand and went over to Julie his first opportunity (with a little push form me) and apologized for the pee on the needlework and marker on the couch and he offered to help clean it all up.  When Julie mentioned his pay, he told her he didn’t feel comfortable taking it because of the things that were ruined.  He gave up $14.  That is a lot of money for a 7 year old!  He showed a lot of bravery and integrity.  Despite the loss of money, he said he felt good about how things ended.

The next lesson I learned last night.  Jason and I cuddled up to watch Oceans 13 after the kids went to bed.  About 20 minutes into the movie, I asked him if he wanted some ice cream.  He said sure, but when I asked him to get it, he said no.  So we went without ice cream.  About 3/4 of the way through the movie, Brynn woke up and Jason was kind enough to go take care of her and comfort her back to sleep.  While he was gone, I took the opportunity to read a blog he sent me about a Pink Hello Kitty AR-15.  I had some questions so when he got back we started talking about it.  I asked him to go get our AR-15 so I could compare and he jumped right up without hesitation to go get the gun.  I asked him later why he refused to get me a little bowl of ice cream, but when I asked for the gun, he didn’t hesitate.  It must be a testosterone thing.  Lesson learned: The way to a favor is weapons.  Ask for the gun first!

The Rootbeer Explosion

It is not unusual for my kids to want junk food or soda for a snack.  Today we had rootbeer in the fridge from a dinner last week.  Kayla was insisting on a “treat” that I didn’t want to give her because she is always eating junk!  So, in an attempt to comprimise with her, I offered her a small glass of soda instead of candy.  Though I realize it probably isn’t that much better.  When I opened the fridge, the whole bottle of rootbeer fell from the top shelf to the floor.  It didn’t rool or even really bounce.  So I figured it would still be okay to open.  I held it in the sink expecting it to fiz over a little bit and maybe go down the sides of the bottle.  What happened was completely unexpected.  As I unscrewed the lid, it bubbled with such force that the lid exploded off teh bottle before I had it all the way unscrewed with a loud “POP” and flew to I don’t know where.  The rootbeer followed the lid.  It went everywhere.  And when I say everywhere.  I mean it.  I was standing at the kitchen sink.  The rootbeer covered my face and hair, arms and shirt.  It covered the sink and window in front of me.  It splattered all the way up to the celing.  It covered the bar and the wall and the cabinets to my right.  Including Brynn who was standing on a stool at the end of the bar.  It covered the barstools on the other side of the bar and the floor beyond that.  To my right, it covered the counter tops, the walls, the cabinets, all the way over to the stove top, oven door and the microwave above them.  Behind me, the floor was covered all the way back to the pantry door and spread from the fridge to the table on the other side of the room.  WHAT A MESS!  I was so shocked, and dripping that I couldn’t do anything but stand there stunned for a minute.  Then I just had to laugh.  Kayla was in the garage getting cat food when this happened, and when she came back in she looked at me and asked what I was laughing at.  Then said “Mommy, what happened to you!?”  That made me laugh harder!  I am so glad I have reached a point in my life that I can find humor in the messes!  Especially because I now have to leave, somewhat sticky still, with stiff hair, to go run some errands and go to my friends house.  I am running late because I had to clean the kitchen and, thus have no time to shower.  Oh well.  At least I will smell yummy.  🙂  By the way, the lid to the bottle is still missing.

Halloween Hangover!

Hello!  Hope everyone had a wonderful Halloween! Ours was really fun.  In my last post I told you about the costume parade and the spider, but I thought I would put up a picture of the house finished with the webs, etc.  After Garion’s parade, the girls and I spent a little bit of time at our neighbors house and then loaded up in the car to go to Jason’s work Halloween party.  Garion was thrilled to get out of school early to go.  He told me it was the second time in his life to get checked out of school early.  The first time was last year to go to California and then this year to go to the party.  I had completely forgotten about last year, but it apparently made an impression on him!  Jason’s party was super fun!  There was a costume contest for any employee and/or member of their family.  The grand prize was $500 cash!  Crazy!  We didn’t win, but there were some really great costumes!  Next year we are going to get really creative.  I got an idea from a friend for this costume that looks like the person is riding on the shoulders of a dwarf.  It looks awesome!  I am going to try to create my own impression of that for next year.

Anyway, After the work party, we came home and decorated the front of the house with spider webs!  My

Garion and half his horde of candy!  He is dumping it out to sort it all!

Garion and half his horde of candy! He is dumping it out to sort it all!

skin is still crawling.  The webs were fake, but every bit as sticky as the real thing!  At last, the trick or treating came.  We did our usual route through the Harry Potter neighborhood.  If you haven’ heard about it in the past, it was in the paper this year.  There are several people in the neighborhood who do “Harry Potter houses”  for Halloween.  The whole neighborhood seems to be getting into it!  Unfortunately, it started to rain on us and the girls were done long before Garion was.  I have discovered that Trick or Treating is somewhat frustrating for me.  Jason likes to stay home ans scare the kids as they come to the door.  Garion likes to go really fast from house to house and Kayla goes unbelievably slow saying her legs don’t work.  (Although, you would think for candy she would be running as fast as Garion is!)  And Brynn is everywhere trying to see everything and follow all the kids running around.  So, I took the kids home and Jason took Garion out for an extra hour of trick or treating while I put the girls to bed.  After a bunch of candy of course!

Saturday was the hangover day.  I expected everyone to sleep in, but no one did.  Go figure.  I was actually surprised because the hangover was much less this year then in previous years.  Usually tempers are high and everyone is tired and no one wants anything but candy to eat and they all throw continual fits to get it. 🙂  But this year, everyone was pleasant and happy and we even got chores done and healthy food into our bodies!  Last night, we went to Garion’s end of season football party!  It was a blast.  There was yummy pulled pork and beef sandwiches with all the sides and cake at the end.  The best part was when the boys got their trophies.  They were so proud!  Of course, I forgot my camera, so my good friend Tara took pictures for me.  As soon as she emails them to me, I will post some of Garion getting his trophy.  The coaches were saying a few words about each boy as they handed out the trophies, and for Garion he said he was one of the most improved kids on the team.  Then as Garion was about to walk away, one of the other coaches said “Yeah, and he is the funniest too!”  Afterward I asked the coach about it and he said, for example, during one of the practices, they were in a huddle and very serious talking about the play they were working on and all of a sudden Garion says “Hey coach!  My dad has that exact same shirt!”  I just had to laugh, because that is such a Garion thing to say.  He had a great season though and is looking forward to playing next year.

Today is Sunday and it is raining.  I just want to take a moment to blog  a little bit more about Garion.  Tonight is the “Eight is Great” program for our stake.  Garion turns 8 in March!  I am looking forward to the program tonight and to spending some time with Garion talking about baptism some more.  I am feeling too young to have an 8 year old, but I have to say that Garion is turing into an amazing young man.  I am not jsut saying that because I am his mother either.  Though I know I am somewhat biased.  He is gentle, kind, sensitive, charitable, spiritual, funny, smart, and imaginative.  It is intimidating thinking of all the things we

Brynn and I snuggin' on the couch Saturday afternoon.  Taking a rest before Trick or Treating!

Brynn and I snuggin Sat. before trick or treating!

are responsible for teaching to our children, but when I look at Garion I feel like I am doing an okay job. 🙂

Sorry to go on and on today.  I just had a lot to say.  Talk to you later!

Kelly

Happy Halloween!!

Happy Halloween!  I love this day!  It gets more and more fun as the kids get older too because they get excited! This year we are getting more into the holiday then we have before.  Usually we just carve pumpkins and call it good.  Last year, Jason put up a floating head that was really neat, but this year, I thought we were just going to deo the pumpkin thing again.  Until about a week ago Jason a blog about a giant spider that was really neat!  So, Last night Jason and the kids made this giant spider and he has it propped up above the eve of our porch and it looks so cool!  It is my worst nightmare come to life, but cool for the holiday anyway! The kids woke up to it on teh roof and they were SO excited!  We have all dressed up this year too.  I am a witch, Jason is a paintball player, Garion is Harry Potter, Kayla is a dog and Brynn is a honey pot!  The kids are so cute!  I usually spend so much time getting them ready I don’t bother to dress up myself.  But after Witches night, I had the great hat and the boa so I decided to go the extra mile this year.  What a fun holiday!  The girls and I just got back from Garion’s costume parade at his school.  There were some great costumes!  Garion looks totally different with his hair black!

Last night we went to Garion’s 2nd Grade program and it was super cute!!  It was titled “Things that make you go EEEKKKK!”  He did a great job!  He sang all teh songs and did all the hand motions, and was great!  A pretty stark contrast to last year when he didn’t sing or do teh hand motions and all he did was play in his shirt. 🙂  It was definatley entertaining to watch!  But he had a great time and the girls and I had fun watching him last night too.  🙂

Sophie

Let me start this blog by saying that I love my dog!  But sometimes she is a pain in the rear!!  I just had the Sherriff stop by about 5 minutes ago.  Now, before I tell you why, let me go back a week.  Last Monday, I had my best friend Krissy over for a visit.  As they were getting ready to leave, we realized that the boys hadn’t cleaned up the basement.  So, without much thought we all left the front room with the door wide open and went to the basement to clean up.  Of course, given such a ripe opportunity, Sophie made a run for it.  In the past she has gotten out and come back within the hour.  But last week, she never came back.  By the next morning, we were really worried.  So I called around and found her at the pound in Lindon.  Jason stopped by to grab her and lo and behold, we had a $80 get of jail charge and a $30 licencing fee and the sherriff wrote us a nice little ticket.  Normally we would have to go to court and stand in front of a judge in the court house in Provo for such an offence, but I have a wonderful friend named Tami, who’s father is an attorney who knows the judge assigned to our case.  He has very wonderfully offered to take our ticket and talk with the judge to have the charge dismissed.  Now, with all that being said, when the sherriff rang my door bell I started to freak out a little.  Turns out he just picked up a dog that is a female yellow lab with a pink collar.  He thought that she belonged to us since our dog was so recently accompanied by him to the shelter.  I am happy to say that Sophie was right out on my deck where I had put her 10 minutes before.  What a way to get the adrinaline pumping! 

Fall Fest

This is just an update about the fall fest. 🙂  We did try it again and the second time around the kids had a great time!  They ate junk food, played the games and won prizes.  Then we came home and  Kayla and Garion went to a birthday party across the street where they rented a bouncy house!  The kids had a great time!  Although, they also have a play set in their back yard and Garion tried to climb the side of it, fell off and hurt his foot.  I didn’t have much sympathy, I just figure that if you are going to climb, be prepared to fall.  That and, he wasn’t really hurt.  I loved him and hugged him and then told him he was fine. 🙂  He is now. 
We are babysitting Meg and Grace tonight for our half of the babysitting switch we set up with Julie and Rob.  THe girls are all having a bubble bath right now and when all the kids are bathed we are going to eat grilled cheese and watch a movie.  Fun, Fun, Fun!  I actually love this part.  Being with the kids and helping them learn to love life.  It is great.
Anyone out there know how to get chewed bubble gun out of clothing?  Garion got it all ove rthe back of his new Harry Potter robe.  Arg….

October

Any one reading my blog will learn pretty quickly that I am an inconsistent writer.  But I have put blogging on my weekly list for Sunday’s.  Eventhough today is Saturday, I am writing because I figure that I will write as often as I can, but at the worst once every week or two.  Hopefully we won’t go another several months. 🙂
This has been a very busy summer for.  Just to catch you up on the basics.  We went to California in the beginning of July, Puerto Rico for my brother, Josh’s wedding at the end of July, Alaska on a Cruise in September for our 10th anniversary and Denver in two weeks for my brother’s wedding reception (for those who were not able to make it all the way to Puerto Rico. :))  Garion has finished a season of tackle football and is well into his 2nd grade year at school.  Kayla is in preschool and loving it!  SHe is learning her ABC’s and all kinds of cute songs that she like to sing around the house as she playing and doing her chores.  Brynn is growing like a weed.  She is starting to talk with 2 word phrases!  Though it is not always clear.  I can understand her because I just know what she is saying. 🙂  But some other people are not able to understand her.  She is 18 months old now and is in nursery at church!  Jason is very excited for this milestone bacause now he can enjoy church and not wander the halls with a bored toddler. Brynn loves nursery!  Last week was her first week and she just walked right in without a backward glance. 🙂  She even threw a fit when I went to pick her up because she didn’t want to leave.  I will take the leaving tantrum to the going in tantrum any time.  If that makes since.
Last night I went to Witches Night with my good friend Julie and her cousin Elham.  It was awesome!!  The are some serious witch costumes there…very elaborate and glittery and fluffy and HUGE hats!  Julie and I have a hat and a boa now.  Hers is purple and black and mine is orange and black.  Both hats have spiders hanging from them and are glittery, thanks to the lady in the store with the glitter spray!  I found several great christmas buys and a fun new church bag for myself!  Julie got a matching one and since we were sorely missing the third part of our trio, Michelle (who is in Mesquite this weekend) we got her a matching bag as well.  🙂  They are black with white pokadots.  Looovveee iiiittttt!!!  
We jsut tried to take our kids to the fall fest at the local charter school and it ended up being a disaster.  We might try again later this afternoon, but I am not sure.  The first thing we did was walk into the room where all teh vendor booths are and Garion saw some marshmello guns.  THey were cool, but I didn’t have the money for it so he started pouting and refusing to do anything else.  He just stood there grumping.  Then, I think Kayla got overwhelmed, because without any trigger that I could detect, she got grumpy and shut down.  SHe didn’t want to do any games and when we tried to do the cup cake walk, she freaked out and started screaming.  Jason had already left with Brynn because she was so tired she was melting down as well.  I called Jason back to get us before he even left the neighborhood, and we came home for quiet time.  All this happened in about 30 minutes of time.  Sometimes it is amazing to me how fast kids can lose it!  In retrospect I fell like I could have been a little more observant to Kayla’s moods and then I could have explained things to her better.  I just assumed she knew how the fall fest worked since we went last year, but Her little 4 year memory doesn’t go back that far on the details.  And with Garion, I should have talked with him before hand about the fact that there are going to be things we want that we can’t afford and we need to be brave and not throw fits.  We can save our money for next time or ask Santa for it for Christmas!  I knew Brynn was tired, but I hoped she would make it through an hour of games.  I was worng.  So, next time I know what precautions to take so hopefully we can have a better time!  🙂  Garion and Kayla are done with a short quiet time and I told them we might go back.  We will talk and see.  I want to have fun at the festival, and I am pretty sure they do to.  So we will try again. 🙂  Such is life with kids.
2 days ago I made tomato puree!  It is just like tomato sauce and I am very proud of myself.  It was ridiculously easy!  We have a Victorio Strainer that we inherited from Jason’s mom and all I have to do is stick the tomatos in the top and twist the handle.  It spits the peel, seeds and other undesirables out the end and gives me beautiful, bright red tomato puree.  I have also been jarring the tomatos to just use as tomatos.  It is really easy as well.  All you have to do is boil the tomatos for about 1 minute to loosen the skin, then peel them as soon as they are cool enough to handle and then quarter them , stick them in jars with a T. of Lemon Juice, a T. of salt and  T of sugar.  THen process them in a steam or water bath for about 45 mintues.  I fel so domestic!  And it makes me feel good to preserve and use all teh harvest from our garden.  We could have done so much more with the other veggies we grew, but I am learning.  Next year we will have salsa, dried peppers, dried herbs, canned fruits, jams, and butters (like apples, plums, strawberries and rhubarb).  The three pumpkins we have on our doorstep are also home grown!  The kids love to use the things from our garden too. 
Halloween is next weekend!  Garion has decided to be Harry Potter, Kayla is a dog and Brynn is a honey pot.  They all look so cute!  I will post a picture of the three of them they next time they all get dressed up.
Well, Have a great day!
Kelly

May 7, 2008

Well, Heather has set a good example for me.  She blogs every week
about her family.  I feel a strong desire to do the same, however, I am
not very good at it.  I am going to pick one day a week and write a
short paragraph about each of us.  So, this is the first week, though I
am not sure Wednesday will stay the day I write. 🙂  So far this week
has been fairly uneventful.  THe weekend was really fun though.  Jason
had fun playing paintball with his team Desert Edge at the Regionals
and completely blew away all the competition.  Desert Edge Yen and
Desert Edge Yang took first and second place and then were able to play
each other in the Finals.  They apparently went out only a single hopper
each and had a great time.  Jason, unfortunatley missed the finals
because he left early to attend a Cinco De Mayo party with the kids and
I.  It was a sacrifice to miss the best part of the Regionals, but we
are grateful and had a good time with him at the party. 
The party
was hosted by a high school friend of mine named Scott and his
beautiful wife Heidi.  There were several other friends of mine there
from high school and their families.  It was really fun to see each of
them since it has been as little as a year and a half for some and  as
much as 7 years for others.  Warren Page proposed to his girlfriend
during the party which was a special treat and an honor to be a part
of.  We ate good tacos and watched the Three Amigos. 
About 2
months ago, Garion was begging me to join a football team.  He is not
currently involved with any sports or extra curricular activities, so I
told him as soon as I found out when and where I could sign him up, I
would.  We have finally found out that sign ups are form now through
the begining of June, but apparently Garion has changed his mind.  He
says he is afraid of getting tackled and getting hurt.  I can’t blame
him, but I am still trying to talk him into joining because I think it
would be a great experience for him.  I have a few doubts about how much
tackling will be happening with 7 year olds, but I guess you never
know.  He is going to pray about his decision not to sign up.  We will
see what he decides.
Brynn is officially one for 2 weeks now.  She
had her immunizations on the 25th of April and yesterday, 10 days
exactly after the shots, she had a reaction to the mmr.  She has had a
fever all weekend, but yesterday she got a rash from her toes to her
head.  It is fine, it doesn’t bother her or itch or anything like that
and her fever is gone.  I called the doctor about it and she said not
to worry, so I haven’t.  The rash is better today but still fairly
pronounced.  She has been pretty clingy and lathargic today, so maybe
the rash has had some effect on her after all.
Kayla has been very
excited because we have been painting her room.  It is a really light,
creamy yellow on top and a nice violet purple on the bottom.  We are
going to get a chair railing to put up hopefully this weekend and she
has spotted some dark purple curtains that have silver shiney spots on
them a Lowes that she really wants.  It has been a fun project for me
to work on.  Something different than the mundane things or ordinary
days.  Although, it has been a little hard to convince Kayla that I
don’t need help painting,  So she just sits there and watches me for
the most part.  I would have let her help, but I just really didn’t
want myself or the carpet to be painted. 🙂
I have been trying to
get back in the habit of running, but I have been having a hard time
with it.  So this week, I decided to try roller blading.  I really
enjoy the sport, but have never taken the time to really do it.  I
bought some pads and went out yesterday morning.  I felt a little
self-concious putting all the padding on.  Who knew you would need so much
armor just to roll down the street!  🙂  But I had to go down a few
hills and I was really glad for the protection when I was going fast. 
I am proud to say that I made it home without falling once!  We will see
what happens tomorrow.
I guess that is all for this week.  I will write more if it comes to me before next week!  Have a happy day!
Kelly

Perl 5.10 for all

For those that haven’t already heard, perl 5.10 was just released for perls 20th birthday.  I had hoped to note this earlier, but was in my car the last two days transporting the family to the Holiday festivities.  So, what’s with 5.10? why a big deal for just another small release?  Well, unlike some languages that change major version numbers at each small release, Perl has actually kept its numbering sane.  So what is in 5.10?  A lot of new features, many of which were specifically brought down from the perl6 design.

Syntactic things like the say operator, built in switch statement, smart match, named regex captures, regex plugins and more.  Add to that interpreter improvements for speed and memory.

A good help with understanding some of the new syntactic sugar can be found in Ricardo’s Slides