Friday, October 30, 2009

Making Faces!

The kids had a great time making jack-o-lanterns last night! The girls had little pumpkins that they decorated and the boys got to draw their faces and help clean out the pumpkins to be our jack-o-lanterns (the parents handled the knives).

The boys were really helpful and wanted to do as much cleaning out of the pumpkin as they could. I had Sandra start helping pick out the pumpkin seeds so we could roast them. She figured out really quick that they are slimy and she didn't want to do that. Such a girl. Mhari had no problem playing with the seeds - "helping" put them in the bowl. It was a nice night, and we even ended up with two pumpkin faces!

Drawing the faces.

Grant's all done! The pumpkin is supposed to be smiling. Talmage thinks he looks scary. I think he could look like he's crying... what do you think?

Daddy was a good sport and helped Talmage with the huge pumpkin! His knife wasn't working very well either, but it worked out in the end!

Here are the finished pumpkins. If you look close at the little ones you can see the drawing the girls did to decorate them. I have a plan for the little ones (dinner experiment) and the others will go out tomorrow for Halloween! It's fun to see the kids creativity, or actually ability to participate with the tradition :).

Counter Project

So we have been having a few family requests to post about our countertop that I (Jeff) have been constructing. It is not fully completed but I decided to post some "progress" photos. It is constructed out of 2 3/4in 4x8 sheets of plywood that I have glued and screwed together. I then trimmed them down to size: about 3x7 or so. The top surface is birch and the side trim is pine.

This counter is to replace the bar counter in our kitchen and will be about 8 inches longer and 3 inches wider. This will allow us to have people sit up to the counter if we need and to give us more work space. We have grown tired of the old butcher block cheap stuff. We have only applied one coat of polyurethane but a few more coats are up coming.

It is not perfect but in all, I think it turned out really well so far. I don't think I can make too many mistakes with polyurethane so all should be clean sailing from here on out.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Visiting fun!

While Grandma and Grandpa were in town we went to the Botanical Gardens. We usually visit the zoo together, but Grandma thought the gardens would be fun (and we just went to the zoo). This time we saw the Japanese Gardens! They were beautiful! There were lots of pictures, but I'm just sharing a few :).

The kids in front of a cool statue thing.

There are lots of these poses... looking at the water, and trying not to fall in (Grandma was going to have a heart attack watching them try to fall). They got to feed the huge monster fish too. They loved that!

Me and the kids. Jeff and his dad were at home doing projects so it was a Mommy and Grandma activity!

Mhari got a tricycle from Grandma and Grandpa. She was feeling left out since all the other kids have bikes.

Jeff visiting with his parents and grilling dinner. I'm glad that even with Jeff's busy schedule he had time to hang out and enjoy spending time with his parents.

We have a great time when family or friends come to visit! Thanks Grandma and Grandpa for driving forever to hang out for a few days!!

Sunday, October 25, 2009


Jeff's parents recently visited for Talmage's birthday. When they come there are usually several house projects that get accomplished. Not this time though. The plan was to have it be a nice visiting weekend with no projects :). Let's just say that with Jeff's desire for projects and adding in his father, who is willing to help out while Jeff is occupied with school or other such things, they found a project to do in the short time they were here.

It was a pretty quick project and just some room rearranging, but I love it all!

We have some planter shelves in our living area that have never had anything done with them. Jeff and his dad got boards to create a real shelf (instead of a top of a wall) and then trim to accent it and make it look like part of the house decor originally. They did a great job. Once the first one was done (between the living room and kitchen) Jeff's mom and I decided on a project for our other shelf area above the couch. That one was pretty easy too. Jeff's dad finished that one up on Monday while Jeff was at school and I finished the last little painting this weekend so it's all done!

The last night they were here we were sitting in the living room and talking about rearranging. With all the talk we found an idea we liked and with the extra movers to help out it got done quite quickly! Now I have a more open area, but still a nice place for sitting.... Let's just get to the pictures :).

We moved the piano across to the opposite wall, by the long couch. It fits well under the Scottish blanket. I was also able to move my rocker out to the living room!

Here you can see the love seat that is now on the red by the fireplace - so the two couches are across from each other. It creates a nice sitting space.

Once the shelf was finished I had a hard time figuring out what I wanted to go on it. With the rearranging I pulled out some of the stuff in my hutch and this is what we came up with (I know you can't se everything, but you get the idea).

We really enjoy looking at our blue vases. They are so beautiful with the light behind them - they glow!

Here is the open area on the opposite side. Jeff and his dad made a shorter shelf and we were able to put up a village in that space. It turned out well. Jeff's dad finished the trim work. He did a great job!

It is really nice to feel like my home is getting finalized. Some projects might never get done, but now those empty spaces feel completed :).

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Super to be 7!

My handsome boy turned 7 on Sunday! He had been so excited for his birthday (can't you tell!). It was a fun weekend. Grandma and Grandpa Williams came to celebrate with us. Talmage received new scriptures as a gift (since he's reading every night). He got that present in the morning before church.

He had a great day.

Later that day he helped me decorate his birthday cake. My friend Shannon lent me her volcano/dress cake pan so we got creative this year :). Talmage really enjoyed putting the dinosaurs on the volcano and trying to help them run from the lava!

It may not be a masterpiece, but it was perfect Talmage!

We had a nice evening together as a family and opened presents. Talmage got a lot of books, and some other fun things (he loves to read).

That night when he was in bed I asked him if he had a good birthday and he said yes it was great! What a sweet kid! He is such a great help and blessing to our family! He is so smart, thoughtful, kind, and loving. We just love Talmage! Happy Birthday!!!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Family trip to the Zoo!

Last Saturday we made it out to the zoo as a family. Jeff has only been with us a few times at the zoo so it was a treat to be together enjoying the beautiful Fort Worth Zoo! It was a nice cold overcast day - perfect for being outside for several hours! We had a lot of fun and the kids really loved seeing all of the animals. 

This was also Mhari's first time being old enough to enjoy the animals. She had a great time! It was a nice relaxed day and all the kids got to spend lots of time with/looking at the animals!

They had fun seeing if Jeff was taller than the elephants, getting the birds to get on the stick, watching the penguins, all the wild cats, seeing the animals in the petting zoo - petting an armadillo, and even petting sea creatures (I'm sure they would add more to this list!). By the time we were done the girls had zonked out! We had a great time spending time together and enjoying the zoo!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Keep us Smiling!

Kids really are too funny. I've captured some of the cute things that the kids have done that just make me smile.

The other day for quiet time Sandra found Mr. Potato Head glasses and started wearing them. Then Mhari had to have a pair :). Sandra wore hers to the school when we picked up the boys and even brought a pair for Grant so they all could have glasses (Talmage already has them, and it seems the kids are still jealous).

Tuesday night I was playing on the computer and letting the kids play for a few more minutes before baths. Mhari came in and showed me her fingers - like something was wrong with them.

It's kind of hard to see, but the pointer fingers are red.

She's done this before with our little ABC stamps so I wasn't too surprised. Then I noticed her face!
She got her cheeks pretty good. Good thing we were about to take baths!

The girls love to play in my shoes. There is one pair that the girls tend to fight over - the black heels.

Mhari was sporting them the other day. Just too funny to see a little toddler in high heels!

So proud of herself too! One day her feet may be too big for my shoes :).

We were listening to some kid songs the other day and one of the songs has the kids act like animals. Let's just say the boys enjoyed acting this song out!

Being Chickens


and birds :)

Simple joy of playing in a box! Hard to not enjoy that! Sandra and Mhari were having a great time! Later the boys started joining in the fun. Unfortunately the box was taken away because it was not big enough and sharing started to be a problem. Oh so sad.

My girls must really be in need of dress up clothes :). Sandra started using her blanket like a dress the other day. Not too unusual, but they hadn't done it recently. Then Mhari got in on the fun with her blanket. Mhari's was more of a hooded cape though. She was adorable!

I'm really not sure how this started. Mhari can do somersaults and the other day she put her foot up like this. Too funny. Maybe she's working on yoga poses or something?!

Before school on Friday Talmage had been playing with two of his stuffed animal puppies. He tucked them in to bed and turned off the light so they could take a nap while he was gone at school. That just made me smile! I'm sure my flash on the camera woke them up though :).

Monday, October 5, 2009

The things they say..

We were on our way to the church building Sat morning to watch General Conference. I had printed off some papers for the kids to work on during it so they would have something to focus on during the talks. One of the papers is a BINGO page to mark the words the speakers say. Talmage was looking at his page and saw the free space in the middle. He then proceeded to explain that the would have to wait to hear the speakers say "free" so they could color that space :). I guess we don't play BINGO enough in our house! (I did explain what the free space is for).

Sunday on the way home from church I heard Talmage talking again: "Crayons are made of wax."
Grant said "What?"
Talmage repeated himself "Crayons are made of wax." When Talmage says crayons it sounds a little different, plus we were in the car so the extra noise, and angle of where Grant was sitting made it harder to hear...

Grant said "No, I'm not!".... thinking Talmage had said "Grant is made of wax." Too funny!

Last night the kids were playing with their stuffed animals upstairs. I heard Talmage talking about the animals needing their mate. I was a little concerned, but wanted to let them play without my interruption. A few minutes later I hear little whiny crying noises from the kids (still playing), then Talmage saying "look, another one was birthed." Now I'm a little curious about his knowledge of mating and birthing!
Kids really are entertaining! I just love them!