Sunday, November 29, 2009

Trimming the tree!

We decided to spend the evening getting ready for Christmas. Really, that just means that we decorated our tree (we have minimal decorations otherwise).

We inherited a pre-lit artificial tree a few years ago and it's been nice to have the tree already, although I do miss the fresh tree smell and the way a real tree feels (until it starts to dry out anyway).

Jeff got to put the pieces together, fluff the branches (ok, we all helped fluff), and fix the top of the tree where the lights had died (string more lights around the top).

Once he was done the kids were more than ready for their turn!

Let the decorating begin!!

Jeff was so good with the kids, especially Mhari! This is her first year being old enough to participate and she did so good too!




The kids did a really good job and couldn't wait to get more ornaments from me. I was slow when it came to having 4 kids to supply with ornaments with hooks all ready to go! Jeff helped get some up high for them, but otherwise they did most of the work. Unfortunately that meant that the breakables were hanging much too low and there were several areas of clumping... I fixed it after they went to bed, but it was still not that bad :).

I got to put the beads around the tree to help it sparkle. That is my favorite part :). This is a pic of me and Mhari after I finished the beads... she wanted to help, kept following around the tree with me, along with several other children.

After all of the hard work Jeff just couldn't hold out any longer...

It was a busy day at church for him and he didn't get a Sunday nap so he crashed early (before the kids even made it to bed). They are so precious when they sleep (hubbies and kids). I'm looking forward to the holidays... and lots of birthdays, there will be lots of these sorts of updates in the future :).

Thursday, November 26, 2009

So thankful!

It is Thanksgiving and I wanted to recount some of the great things about today :).

The first one has to do with the food. Well, the pies actually. I love pie, but I only make it for the holidays. One of the reasons I feel that I can make apple pie is because of this handy dandy device - the apple peeler corer slicer!!

It works so great and all I have to do is cut the apples to make them small for the pie (they have been sliced all through, I just cut down them).

Another great thing about this is that my kids love to eat the peels for a snack!

What a great healthy snack - can't complain about that... even when it's just as fun to play with as it is to eat (turn it into a snake, a really long tongue... they could go on forever I'm sure).

This is the precooked apple pie - waiting for the crumb topping. See what beautiful slices it makes! I just love it! Such a hard job that I can do in minutes! I'm truly thankful for the blessings of inventions!

We were invited over to a friend's house for Thanksgiving dinner. Since I didn't have to do the meal I contributed 2 pies. The lighting is bad, but one is a banana cream pie and the other the finished apple pie. Both tasted yummy.

My other wonderful blessings from the day are my sweet children. They had such a great time for the Thanksgiving festivities! Getting to go out was probably a special treat since we haven't left the house all week.
Here's Talmage trying to decide on which dessert to pick. These are tough choices when you are little!

Cute Sandra!

Grant playing with the toys!

Mhari playing with their kitty. This was the safest way to play. She chased the kitty around until dinner and then again after dinner. The kitty was feisty so doing a toy kept the kitty from playing too rough with Mhari and kept Mhari far enough away that she didn't keep trying to pick up the kitty. Man does this girl love animals!

I'm sure I could go on - it seems like a small list - food, inventions, kids...
I guess I'll add my hubby to the list while I'm here. Today he mowed our lawn. It looks so much nicer :). I know that right now is a busy time for him with finals coming up and he did it all on his own. I'm grateful to have a caring thoughtful husband who is involved with our home and family!
The real thing that I must say is that I'm grateful for the Savior, Jesus Christ. I know that I make mistakes everyday and because of his love and the atonement I have the chance to change and return back to my Heavenly Father. I also have the blessing of one day becoming an eternal family if I live worthy. I know that all of the these other blessings would mean nothing without those promises that I can have through Jesus Christ. I'm grateful for the Christmas season that is now upon us and the opportunity to focus more on Christ in our lives!
It is a great thing to stop and remember our blessings! I hope everyone had a Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Daddy's little helper!

Mhari has been such a big helper that I couldn't help but take some pictures :).

Jeff was securing down the new counter top with L brackets and Mhari was right there to give assistance!

Here she is helping hand over the screw driver.

Daddy let her push the button on the drill. She really liked "helping" with that!

I think Jeff had some problems when she got a little too involved... hard to get in there with a punkin on your lap :). Let's just say that she's very dedicated to her work!

Here are just some cute pictures...

Playing in Grant's shoes. She was very happy with herself!

Daddy sharing his hat. Must build in the fan base while they're young :).

We love having Mhari around and she is an amazing helper! She is growing up too fast!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Dino Hunters

Friday after school we went on a family outing to Dinosaur Valley. It is a Texas state park and has real dinosaur foot prints in the creek bed. The kids had so much fun hunting down the foot prints! It took us a few tries, but we finally did find the dino prints! The water level was pretty high so that probably didn't help our hunting. The kids liked looking at the foot prints, but I think they were more excited about the huge dinosaur statues! They had a great time running around, reading, and just having a great time by them!

Since we just picked up the boys from school Grant had made turkey hats for him and his sisters (Mhari destroyed hers in the car) so that is why in the pictures Grant and Sandra have turkey hats :).

Here are our 4 little hunters!

After all of the exploring we hung out by the car and had a dinner picnic before heading home. Talmage caught a grasshopper that was visiting us during our picnic. Man he blends in really well with those rocks!

This is the beautiful sunset we got to enjoy while eating dinner. It started off really light and turned this great orange-red color! So cool!

Here is are some of the other fun photos of the adventure!


True Texans!?

There are a few stereotypes that you think of when you hear of least I do. The most prominent in my mind are the longhorns on the cars, gun racks, and large cow pictures in the house. Yesterday we took care of one of the three listed above. We got a cow picture. We have actually had it for a while. I took the photo of a Scottish Highland Cow when Sharla and I went back to my mission in 2002. Quite a while ago a friend of ours enlarged it to a 24x30 size and then it has taken me way too long to make a frame for it. I couldn't come to spending the cash to do it. So I made one out of oak planks...

This is the back of the frame. They were some pretty big planks. The whole mounting cable thing was a bear to devise given the limitations of materials and tools. However, so far it is still hanging so it is a success.

We wanted to hang it up stairs in the family room. We have wall space up there. Our original intent was to put it above the T.V. but the picture was a little too big. So we decided to move across the room and put it there....

That meant we would need to displace our photo of the 2nd coming of the Savior. It is a small picture for a big wall. While taking down His picture, Sharla asked if it was bad that we are removing him from our walls, being so prominent, and replacing it with a cow picture. I said I think the Israelites did that a couple of times and got into trouble.

So in an effort not to be sacrilegious we decided not to take Him down but merely to "move" Him to just above the T.V. where he used to be. The theory is that we now have Him to look at while we watch movies. You will notice he is hung really low (reused the old nail holes). The T.V. didn't used to be there. We have just not put Him up higher yet.

Here is our Cow (pronounced C-ooo)

Now all I need to work on to be 100% Texan is a Big Truck, call it Gunther, with big longhorns and a gun rack to go with it. Maybe I'll graduate from school first for those.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Going by fast!

There's nothing too exciting going on that's blog worthy, but I wanted to update a little bit...

Life seems to be moving quickly these days. I think as a mother that really started to hit when my oldest started school. Where did the time go? I remember with my October baby thinking that it would be FOREVER before we were in school, but nope, we are in 1st grade now, and my 2nd one is in Kindergarten! That really was fast!

They were so little and cute! I remember having my two little boys and thinking that having boys was what life was about...

Now I have two little girls - who aren't so little anymore, but they sure are cute :).

It is hard to believe that my baby is going to be 2 next month! Seriously time moves along without you realizing it sometimes. I could spend all my time reminiscing about my dear little ones, but that's not the only thing going by fast these days ...

Jeff is getting close to the end of another semester already! Finals here we come. Once this one is done we are to our last year of school count down (as things are planned at this point). That really does seem fast! Wasn't law school supposed to be forever long? Wasn't I never supposed to see my husband again? Well, he's been so good about making time to be at home in the evenings. I know he is sacrificing some of his school dedication to be here more with us and I am grateful for all he does for us! I don't know how next semester will pan out with his classes so maybe it will get worse before it's over.

With all of this said I am so happy for the fun times with my kids, little, and bigger! They have been so fun! I don't want them to be little forever, but man I don't want to miss all the fun we share together! I know that sometimes the hard things, like school, seem to take forever, but in the end it's not a sacrifice for the benefits gained! I am enjoying all the fun, crazy, busy parts of life!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Big Kids!

Big boys still take naps with their huge stuffed dogs right?
Grant is just so sweet when he sleeps for quiet time!

The kids have really loved to "play" the piano recently. We don't do lessons yet, but they all want to learn. Sometimes it gets loud with the competing composers, but over all it's a fun experience and not too loud!

Isn't Mhari just too cute.

They always say that kids should be involved in chores....
Mhari's not too young, right? Well, she's been helping with our kitchen chores since forever it seems like. The other day I noticed that she is getting better with the big broom, not just the swiffer.

She even moved out the trash cans to be sure she was doing a thorough job! Look at her form - it's obvious she's been trained by the best.

Mhari is such a Big helper! Someday I'll have to fight her to do chores... I should enjoy it while it lasts!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Pumpkin patch? Nope - Cabellas

The ladies in our ward were getting together to drive out to this awesome pumpkin patch the week of Halloween. It was a beautiful day for the trip, considering it had been raining the day before. One of the ladies got there and phoned us while we were on our way to let us know it was closed because of mud. Bummer! Since there was a Cabellas right about where we were on the road we decided to turn it into a Cabellas trip. No pumpkins, hay rides, or bounce houses, but plenty of taxidermy :).

It was kind of funny to see such neat looking animals and not have them move... like at the zoo :). I think the kids didn't mind because they could see them all really well - they couldn't run away!

Here is Sandra with 2 of her friends - Angelica and Phoebe.

Mhari and Sandra looking at the antelope (I think that's what they are).

Let's go kayaking! It was popular for the kids to play on!

This display was beautiful to look at! I don't think it was a real elephant, but maybe - what do I know about taxidermy?

Something actually still alive! Check out these huge fish! Mhari was right up to the glass and loved looking at them. They came up to her and that kind of made her nervous, but not enough to get down.

We had a nice picnic outside and then headed home. It was an exciting morning, even if we didn't get to go to the pumpkin patch. It was my first time at Cabellas and my favorite part was the sample of fudge - mmmmm good!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Welcome to our Bar!

The counter top is now finished and is large enough to seat kids up to it... we have a bar! Yeah! The previous counter top was just glued down so once Jeff popped it off there was just a little clean up to do and then reglue the new one down. It was a pretty quick job all things considered. Jeff is planning on adding more supports later. It is amazing the difference the new counter top makes in our kitchen!

From the first photo to the last photo you can kind of compare the size difference (look at the light switches).


Clean up


It is now 12 inches deep on the side to allow for the kids to use for a bar or just more work space. Now if we just had some bar stools... another project to do!
Great job hunny! It looks fabulous :)