The zoo… the zoo… the zoo

06 june 20149Went to the zoo today. Boy-howdy. Liza screamed for 10 minutes in the parking lot. We’re not sure why. I think she wanted the stroller instead of the wagon. Oh-so-2! We made it through the crowded entrance… only to enter a crowded zoo. I guess everyone else in Utah thought it perfect zoo weather. And how it was! Like highs in the low 70s. I nearly went straight back home because of the crowds. But we persevered since we have a year pass anyways.

We saw the new lions & zebras. The boys liked the ostrich. Liza was sad that the giraffes were nowhere to be found. Abe liked the elephants, the swinging monkeys, and the bald eagles. The rhinos had feeding time and we missed them… much to Tru’s dismay. We made it about half-way through and headed uphill (literally) to the exit. (see kids pulling and pushing and riding in wagon) We’ll have to do the rest of the zoo at a later date.

The kids thanked me for taking them, so perhaps they had at least a little fun. For me, it was more stressful managing shoving boys, whining Liza, and hungry kids amidst the crowd.

One funny thing was this sweet older woman asking if there was some event or occasion going on with all the young mother’s at the zoo. I wasn’t sure how to respond … “Welcome to Utah during summer break!” seemed the most applicable.

FYI… Really love this sunscreen! It isn’t greasy and smelly like other sunscreens. Thank you Trader Joes!IMG_1905 copy

Ninja Power

A day of dress-ups … ninja style… with origami ninja stars. Queen Ninja Liza was a little glum.06 june 20148

I’ve been surveying folks who eat Greek yogurt?
– Do you really enjoy eating Greek Yogurt?
Or do you just eat it because of the extra health benefits?

(for me… higher level of protein than regular yogurt.)
I’ve never enjoyed any greek yogurt I’ve tried. But this kind… Tillamook Farmstyle Greek Vanilla doesn’t gag me out too much.
Last night’s snack… blueberries, cottage cheese, cucumbers, and a little bit of stove-popped popcorn.
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p.s. Jimmy went to the Salt Lake Temple today. I went to Mt. Timp temple tonight. I took my merry ol’ time as I was in desperate need for a break from the noise! Also… prep for Jimmy going to a job interview in Maryland this weekend.
While waiting in the chapel for the session to start I read Psalms 55 …
which sort of made me chuckle as I applied some of it to life & my struggles lately.
(I’ll tell ya… summer with all the tots home… this new eating routine… tiredness … big belly & dysfunctional hips are plum wearing me out!
It seems that sometimes there is nothing left to give to my fam.
But I know these times require DIGGING DEEP … drawing from that Spiritual Reserve … and continue to add to that reserve… sigh.)

1 Give ear to my prayer, O God; and hide not thyself from my supplication.

2 Attend unto me, and hear me: I mourn in my complaint, and make a noise; …

4 My heart is sore pained within me: … (What more can I do to help create peace in this home and family? – ok… maybe start with getting rid of Ninja play!)

5 Fearfulness and trembling are come upon me, and horror hath overwhelmed me. (ok – not horror… but I am trying not to fear about the future)

6 And I said, Oh that I had wings like a dove! for then would I fly away, and be at rest. (escape to temple for respite, peace, and inspiration)

7 Lo, then would I wander far off, and remain in the wilderness. …

8 I would hasten my escape from the windy storm and tempest. (or chaos of children arguing – PEACE CHILDREN, PEACE!)

9 … for I have seen violence and strife in the city. (does constant wrestling & poking eyes out count as violence! those boys!)

10 Day and night they go about it upon the walls thereof: mischief also and sorrow are in the midst of it. … (though I know we have pleasant, happy moments, it does seem that often the strife does go on from 6 a.m. – 8 p.m. – Day & Night)

16 As for me, I will call upon God; and the Lord shall save me. (may i feel the calm … in the storm … or may the storm be calmed by the Master of Peace.)

17 Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice.

18 He hath delivered my soul in peace from the battle that was against me: for there were many with me. …

22 Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.

23 But … I will trust in thee.

{So … now I am focusing on casting my burdens upon the Lord … to ease worries… gain peace… and increase faith. For some reason it seems easier said than done.}

A Rainy, Rainy Day!

We had rain all afternoon. I loved it (despite the kids being cooped up in the house all day). Listening to rain falling during quiet time was a ‘keeper’ moment. When the clouds cleared, we saw how much it had snowed in the mountains. 42 degrees down here… in mid-June. It has definitely been a cooler June (and I’m not complaining!)06 june 20145

Went through Eliza’s clothes to sell/give away. This is what we kept. Sweet tiny hats and blessing dress! Girl clothes were hard to consider getting rid of.IMG_1810 copy

But with these cute boy options, we’ll delight in the arrival of tiny boy coming in 9 1/2 weeks. I love the brightly-colored minky blankets I found on zulily. … oh and the free chevron/minky carseat cover!
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I entered the bathroom to find this dirty pile… waiting for Tru to sort. This was the result of leaving laundry 1 1/2 weeks undone. I’m trying to imagine adding oodles of baby burp rags and clothes to this. Wait – don’t think about that!
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Abe made this leather cuff at Webelos. Cool! For the other 30 minutes a man in our ward told the gruesome story of his car accident 16 years ago.

Liza sporting her ‘Elsa Braid’ with the queen-bee crown that Hannah made.

Ants on a log… we’ve been loving peanut butter and celery for snacks lately. This counts as 0 carbs for me. Eat away! Even Truman and Abe love this snack!
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Can you believe Liza really sleeps like that? So precious and perfect. She was starting to stir even though I snuck in to take this picture.

I love this picture of Abe laughing. He checked out an origami book from the library and was teaching Hannah to make ninja stars.

Last one… good grief … computer games. After quiet time yesterday of the boys playing club penguin (free trial), frozen, etc, I deleted all game bookmarks from the computer and changed my log in password. Summer is for playing outside and exploring… not for playing ipad, wii, computer games. Bleh… kills the brain, I say… Plus, if you’ve ever met Truman after he’s played on ‘screens’ for an hour …
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Janey came to visit

06 june 201413Janey & her fam came to visit. My kids loved meeting Baby Bennett… especially Liza. She fills every dinner conversation with a comment about “Baby Bennett” whom she only knew through instagram. Ryan seemed to have a blast with the boys in the yard. I’m afraid we took the picture of all the kids about 5 minutes after Mia’s limit. She was quite happy the rest of the time.

Look at those cute cousins! Thanks for visiting from Hollywood guys! And thanks for sharing all the glorious goods with our new baby boy. Family is really quite great!IMG_1706 edited crop

Summer 2014 Education Plans

IMG_1695 copyOkey-Dokey… only a week late getting into the summer education groove. Baby Steps!
Here’s the plan:
a little classical music education
a little character development
some fun dot-to-dot & word search
a little family history education
Spiritual development – memorizing scriptures
Family fun!
healthy eating (hannah & abe are doing a food log this week)
Hannah requested a workbook (she loves Math, she does!)
Abe can focus on Webelos activities and reading.
He happens to love National Geographic books like ‘Myths busted”.
Max – we’ll keep him writing and thinking for 1st grade prep.

We’ll see how useful these clipboards are. Each week I’ll put new school papers on for them to do. They can keep track of their goals & assignments. In the school year they can be used as the catch-all place for all the papers needing to be signed or saved. Mostly it was fun to mod-podge them with Miss Hannah.

Overkill? Perhaps.
But – it’s a plan so that mom at least has a back-up for quiet time.
Having a plan has helped my anxiety about a long summer with a pregnant mama and restless kiddos.
And if life changes – move or health issues for mom – we’ll back off and pick it up next summer.
Like how I’m trying to pretend that I can fly by the seat of my pants?

p.s. putting together character, spiritual, music education resources makes me want to homeschool. So much time is wasted at school waiting around for other kids to finish work (I know – one of those life lessons that teaches patience). But how awesome to actually spend time learning all the things I hope my kids will learn … BUT~ yes, homeschooling with 6 kids is sooooo not in the plan. Things would have to be very critical at school for me to pull my kids out. Really! But we’ll take the opportunity in summer to plug through a few things.