Monday, April 25, 2011

Easter 2011

Easter went something like this at our house: Joey was bound and determined to catch the easter bunny. I set my alarm for 5 so I could make a special treat and make sure the bunny came. Ah, the best laid plans- Joey was up at 4:58 and never went back to sleep. Joey stayed in his room until 6:15 when he came down with Peter who had to write his talk for sacrament. Sasha ran up the stairs and woke up Jon about 6:30. I told the boys they had to wait until 7:15 to collect any eggs then I would get Arabella up. I then had to stipulate that she got to find 4 eggs before they could pick up even one because they had figured out where most of them were.
And so the hunt!
1st Egg found
Peanut's basket with princess dolls.
Joey got his basket down before I could get a picture but the squirt gun was great even without water.
Jon found his and was loving his water gun! (They played with these until it was time to get ready for church and there was no fighting. Yea!!!!)
Reach for those high ones!
This was the elusive egg! Last egg found.
Bunny Buns! (Recipe found in the Friend April 2011 issue) These took almost 4 hours exactly from start to finish (they really take 2 hours to rise). Delicious!
Easter picture! (Thanks mailbox for doubling as a tripod.)
They may not have smiles but they sure look good. Joey got his first actual tie- tie, now we can both learn how to tie one. And yes, Arabella is wearing mardi gras beads- she and Jon had been playing dress ups and it was not worth fighting her to take them off.

It was a great Easter! Peter did a great job on his talk even though he ended up with 1/3 the time he was supposed to get. The kids were on a sugar buzz all day, I got a nap in the afternoon and we had 2 sets of missionaries for dinner. I listened to Conference while I was in the kitchen and it was wonderful. I am so grateful for that time in the kitchen by myself when I could hear the testimonies of apostles and reflect on what Easter is all about. I am so thankful for my Savior! Oh the wonderful power of the atonement and the blessing of the sacrament. I am so grateful for the resurrection and knowing that He lives.
Jon's teacher greeted me at preschool this morning with the exclamation: "He is risen!" I echo her sentiments. I often feel that the last week of Christ's life was dark- betrayal, beatings, pain, agony, the atonement, crucifixion- and yet I love the picture of Christ appearing to Mary outside of the tomb. The picture (standard church one) is full of light and he is whole and his purpose fulfilled. He is risen! I am so grateful for the restoration and my membership in this great church. I pray that each day I may strive to live more like Him.

Earth Day at the Zoo

We went to the zoo on Friday because the kids did not have school due to it being Good Friday. Well, I figured there would be a good number of people due to many schools being out but I had not thought of the field trips for those that were still in school or that it was Earth Day. We made good time to the Zoo but getting parked and into the zoo took forever. Oh well, we had fun and the kids did a really good job staying by me with the crowds.
"But mom this hole is so much more interesting the birds flying over my head."
My monkeys playing with the gorillas.
I have mentioned this animal to many of you and I wish the picture was better but here it is...the Okapi. It is the cousin to the giraffe due to its longer sloping neck and 12-18 inch long tongue. But yes those hind legs have zebra stripes. I think this is so cool!
"Please keep your hands inside of the monorail car due the pelican family (there were about 5 this close) sitting practically on the track." Yes, pelicans will bite fingers.
I have never seen an elephant with its legs crossed but there it is.
This is a harpy eagle but I always think of a hippogriff when I see it.
Jon is standing by a huge toad and I managed to capture a slightly toad like face.
This was the biggest hit! We only ended up with 30 minutes to play but they played hard. In fact I could no hardly get a picture of Jon he was moving so fast. That is him running off to the right of Arabella.
Joey going for a big jump!
Arabella and I sitting in the giant nest on the playground.
Zoo keeper Jon
Zoo keeper Joey
Zoo keeper Arabella!
We have one week left on our zoo pass and we may try for a last trip on Saturday with Daddy!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Silliness

Kids do not try this at home because you should not put things in your ears but if you do happen to put Mr. Potatohead parts on your ears and mouth please leave them there long enough for your parent to take a picture. Then you will have to listen to them tell you why you should not do this or encourage brothers/sisters to do this. (But really don't they look so silly!)
Our air conditioning was not working so I had let the kids play in the pool earlier in the day. I was busy trying to get dinner made and get ready for a presidency meeting. Sasha was being difficult- jumping on the kids, breaking into the garden and digging, etc. but she kept barking when she was in her kennel so I let her out again. After about 5 minutes I heard Arabella giggling with delight and this is what I found.
Sasha and Arabella (fully clothed) playing in the pool. Well really Arabella using a shovel to dump water on Sasha. She was loving it and Sasha did not see to mind to much actually.
I had to pause during my 45 minutes of chaos to capture an adorable moment of childhood!
Moments to be cherished when the chaos is forgotten!

Arabella'a Achievements

Arabella woke up with a dry diaper last Monday morning and so I decided to try the potty training thing. I had the week off and she has shown signs of readiness. Also, it was either now or wait until after the baby comes and that seemed like a really long time to keep changing diapers for her so we went for it.
So when she goes in here she gets...

a sticker on here which when filled leads to...
one of these. Princess Tiana has already been won/awarded. She is doing well and the last few days has been better about telling me when she needs to go and not just me taking her every 1-2 hours. We are proud of her and I think I have more patience this time around, which makes me feel sorry for the frustration I felt towards the boys during their potty training. Oh well, I guess as parents we live and learn. I would also like to give a thank you to Dora the explorer for having underwear that Arabella wants to wear and pull ups that have flowers and butterflies that disappear when wet- this adventure would not be the same without you.

City Easter Egg Hunt

Last Saturday we took the kids to an easter egg hunt put on by the city.
We went last year and the kids got a ton of eggs so we decided to go again.
The kids had fun playing in the mini ambulance above and exploring the fire truck below.

The park has 4 baseball diamonds and each of the kids was on a different field doing their hunts at the same time. I went with Arabella and she did well getting 9 eggs. Peter took Jon whose bucket was nearly overflowing and Joey was brave and went alone. He had just under a full basket of eggs. Each egg had a piece of candy in it which is nice. We went out to lunch and then realized we had enough free sandwich coupons from a vendor at the event to go out for dinner. (I was glad since I had worked the night before and did not sleep until 1 that afternoon so cooking was not high on my list.) Happy Easter Egg Hunting!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

This and That

This is Sasha (sideways). She is still very much a puppy but is becoming more calm and we are enjoying her in our family.
This is Sasha and Rusty getting to know each other. Sasha spent a few days very carefully observing these guinea pigs but now she is not as interested.
This is a photo taken by Arabella. This is what happens when you leave the camera where the kids can reach.
This is Jon's picture of Arabella. They were filling my closet with the balloons from Peter's announcement that our baby is a girl!
This is Arabella's "tent" turned to hear the prophet speak during conference. We loved General Conference Weekend at our house. I hope you did too.
This is Arabella at Karate testing and I am not sure where she got the clover glasses.
This is Joey intensely doing his midterm testing. He has to go another 2 months before he gets his red belt but he is doing better.
This is Jon doing his testing. He got really nervous and had some trouble with his form so he will finish testing on Monday. We are very proud of him for the work he has been doing to get ready. I think the whole family almost knows his form with all of the practice we have been doing.
This is at the park we pass each time we take Joey to therapy. After his last appointment we decided to stop and play. There is a park and botanical gardens. BEAUTIFUL!
This and the picture above are what I got when I said sit closer to each other and act like you love each other. Arabella grabbed their heads. So silly.
This is Jon posing with the coy fish.
This is me and Joey in the shade enjoying the flowers.
This is the park portion and that is Joey and Jon at the top of the big spider web ball thing (true name I am sure of it.)
This is our new pool! Yes, small but it will be great to soak my swollen feet in. It was a bit windy on Saturday but I finally let the kids play in the sprinklers. They had so much fun!
This is the trampoline, 3 kids, and a hose with running water- I think you get that there was much laughter and happiness.
This is a picture I took at a preparedness fair we went to on Saturday afternoon. This huge flag was blowing majestically in the wind at the top of a very tall fire truck ladder. It was a great day!

I went to the temple on Saturday morning and ended up in the Tongan session. That was interesting. I of course wore the interpretation headset. It was really interesting to hear some of the words of the ceremony in another language while hearing them in English and knowing that it is always true- no matter what language. I love the temple! I love the gospel and I love that it is for all of God's children no matter where they are from or what language they speak.

That was awesome! Jon's preschool had a talent show Wednesday and I found out on Monday. I asked if he was going to do his karate and he said no he wanted to sing. I asked what and he said "I am a Child of God". Parents were invited. It was conducted by the music teacher and so all of the kids sang songs. They all sang songs they have been learning over the year. Most of the kids were really shy and the teacher helped them get started. Jon's turn came and she asked what song he was going to sing and he told her. She said I don't know that one and he said that he did not need help. And no he did not. He sang it with gusto! As a parent I was so proud of his confidence. I hope that his confidence was not only because of his personality but because he knew that what he was singing was true. Needless to say it was fun to hear those precious words echoing in the halls of a Methodist church.
video

Sunday, April 3, 2011

It's a.... (really this time)

GIRL!!
Peter way out did himself this time. He decided to text as many people as he could and arrange for them to text me at 9 pm and tell me the good news. At the same time, I was let into my room where I found this...!



I went to a baby shower for a friend and the kids helped to decorate the room.
Oh, the fun the kids have had with all of those balloons. I found them all in my closet on Saturday morning when I went to get dressed; they had been on the floor still when I woke up.

We are so very excited! Arabella still has not quite figured out what is going on but we figure it will make more sense the bigger I get. I am looking forward to matching dresses for my two little girls.