Friday, September 28, 2007

Half Nakey

Our little boy is so funny.  During the summer Megan began commenting on men without shirts.  She started calling them "half nakey".  Kade is a little parrot sometimes and picked up this phase.  Anytime he's without a shirt or pants or both he says he's "half nakey".  I make sure to point out that he's "all nakey" when both shirt and pants are off.  (That's me the correcting control freak.)

Half Nakey

Today he was wearing some new pants that he'd just got and had gotten dinner all over his shirt (it's not a new thing to have a dirty shirt, it's usually his napkin) and had taken it off.  Then he had to run around saying he was "half nakey".  After that got everyone's attention he started saying, loudly, "armpit!" with his fingers in his pits, flapping his arms.


A few weeks ago we watched "Holes" for family movie night.  There was a kid nicknamed Armpit.  Kids on the movie were chanting "armpit, armpit".  Kade, being the afore mentioned parrot, picked up on this lovely phrase too and uses it whenever he can.

It's never boring around here when Kade's in performance mode.  Here's a few more pictures of him showing off his big belly and muscles.

Big Belly  Muscle Man

Mickey's Late Present

Warning: If you don't know or care about knitting you may consider this post boring. You can skim through it and check out the pictures.

A couple days ago I finally finished the project for Mickey's birthday. I couldn't do exactly what I wanted with it but I decided to give it to him anyway. I can always attempt the detail later, after some practice. I didn't want him to wait anymore.

I suppose I should start at the beginning of this story. I was looking at sock patterns on line and through Knitting Pattern Central found a pattern called TechGuy Socks. There is a sock at the bottom of the page with a Mac Apple logo on it. This totally jumped out at me. This would be perfect for my computer geek. I knew I wouldn't follow the pattern exactly because I knew there was no way he would wear wool.

I tried to order some Cascade Fixation yarn before I left for my trip but I didn't try early enough so I could have it while I was gone. (I saw this yarn used a book from the library and thought it would work really well in socks for Mickey.) I found a place in Ohio to order from but to overnight three little balls of yarn was going to be $42! What! I could drive there and get it but the gas would probably be more than $42 and I had too much to do. I decided I would try a different yarn. I tried the sock about 4 times while in Utah but it didn't work out. After settling back to normal life I ordered it from Yarn Market, the store in Ohio. It came in two days! I could have ordered it before I left and still got it in time. Oh well.

I had to figure out this yarn, it's 98.3% cotton and 1.7% elastic. You have to pull it tight while you knit with it and I had to work out my gage. It took me a few attempts but it turned out really nice. The apple detail is something called duplicate stitch. You work a piece of yarn over the knitted item, kind of like embroidery or cross stitch. The main part of the sock is black and the stitches are tight. I couldn't get it to work. I need to knit up a swatch of it and practice.

Anyway, Mickey seemed to like his socks and the idea of the apple. I pulled off a surprise too. He thought I was doing something for the laptop. (Janel, I think your present threw him off.) Kade was so happy that Mickey had his own socks from Mama (Kade had tried them on a few times while I was working on them) that he had to have his on too. He calls them slippers, they are a little big.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Dinner Fun

I went to get a picture off the "little" camera (we have two that we use, the other being the "big" or "good" camera {don't get me started on cameras}) and found these fun pictures of us enjoying our dinner. I made Chicken Parmesan and Kade started slurping up his linguine. He was cute doing this so I had to grab the camera and take a few shots. He was having a hard time with the linguine so everyone took their turn showing him how to do it. They also got their picture taken. Kade had to have a turn with the camera too. He took an "artistic" shot of me. I think his finger blocked the flash causing the redness. I also got my head chopped off. I guess the linguine was the most important thing. Enjoy the pictures, we enjoyed the meal.

Almost there

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Is It Autumn Already?

Our maple tree, our only tree, has been changing the color of it's leaves for the past few weeks, a little at a time. I asked myself, is it Fall already? Then I thought the kids are back in school, soccer has started, and Notre Dame games are in full swing. I looked on line and low and behold the first day of Autumn was Sunday! We've had a hot start with a record breaking high of 92 yesterday. Well, Happy Autumn. Here's our little maple tree dressing up for Fall.

Changing Leaves

Weekend Review

This weekend has been rather hectic. I wanted to post this story yesterday but I didn't really have time (see explanation below). Friday Megan stayed home from school and we tried to get some things done around the house. I had to finish getting ready for the Super Saturday. Betty said Meg could come visit her for a while if I didn't want to drag around two kids while I ran errands. Meg stayed for about 6 hours with her. I think they both had a good time. I ran to Michael's to pick up a few more things I needed for the next day. At 6:00 we did some set up at church. We had some help from Mike, Kelly G., and Greg. Thanks for your help. Then we headed home and had our family movie night. We watched the new movie, Barbie as The Island Princess. It's a cute movie as all the Barbie ones are. I believe Mat is a romantic. She would get all excited and cheer when Ro and the Prince would meet or end up together. She's funny. We put the kids to bed and then I had more prep work to do but I didn't last long. I couldn't keep my eyes open so I was in bed by 11! That's early for me.

Saturday we got up early and headed to church to get things ready. Mickey got out a TV for the nursery and then he and the kids went to Megan's soccer game.

Trying for a Goal

I was at church until 2 doing the Super Saturday. It's a craft day for women. Not many came. Maybe they aren't crafty, I don't know, but those who came had a good time. The big hit was a 72 hour kit. These are great for emergencies or to keep in the car in case you get stuck for hours on the highway. After the clean up I came home and napped for a couple of hours. I can't really remember what else happened except Mickey and Kade went to the store for Kade's dad date and they brought home a few groceries and a movie. I can't even remember if I made dinner or not. After the kids were in bed Mickey and I watched The Prestige. This movie was recommended to us by the Williams. I liked it but was a little confused. The end cleared up some things but I think the ending could be better. I'll have to watch it again.

Sunday Megan was still itching her head. We all went to church but Mickey, Meg, and Kade left after Sacrament Meeting with Mike and they went to visit Betty. I got to drive Betty's car to her house after church. It was nice but different than both our cars. The kids snacked and visited with Grandma. Then we had to leave. Mat announced it was her teacher's birthday and I thought we could make up something and take it to her, she only lives a few streets away. Mat helped me make up a recipe in a jar for chocolate chip cookies. Mattey, Megan, and I rode our bikes over to Sister Miller's house and gave her the jar and wished her a Happy Birthday. It turns out her birthday isn't until Wednesday. Oops, better early than late. We came home and I made omelets for dinner. The girls really like these with ham and cheese. Then it was bed time again. This is a happy and difficult part of the day. Happy for me because it will be quiet for a while but difficult because they don't want to sleep. Anyone with kids knows this. Mat has also been coughing and sniffing. Great she's getting sick again.

Monday morning I spotted more lice in Meg's hair. I took Mat to school because we were running late. When we came home I got on the computer and started looking up ways to get rid of lice. Apparently the RID we used doesn't actually kill the eggs, just the live lice. Nice. I found a few people raved about Denorex shampoo and some people rinse with vinegar to dissolve the eggs or at least make them less sticky. So we went out and got some Denorex and chocolate of course. That makes everything better, just ask Janel. I got Meg in the tub and used a lot of the shampoo in her hair. We let it sit for about 20 minutes, then rinsed, and repeated. This shampoo is for dandruff and it really makes your scalp tingle, also my hands.

Sudsy Meg

Megan didn't seem to mind. She lay in the warm tub listening to a story on CD, Hank the Cowdog. I rinsed out the shampoo again, it was only about 5 more minutes, and then rinsed her hair with vinegar. When I let Meg smell it in the bottle she said it smelled good but once it was in her hair she changed her mind. I then spent about 3-4 hours pulling out all the eggs I could find. My shoulders and back were sore and tight. Meg did really good. I asked her if I got lice if she would pick out all the eggs for me. She said, "No." That's nice to know. The shampoo really helped with her itchy scalp. She got to go to soccer practice at 6. Mat came home from school with her homework and a request for apples, something about the first day of Autumn and Johnny Appleseed Day. Luckily I had some burrito filling in the freezer because after all that picking and doing 5 loads of laundry I really didn't feel like making dinner.

In the evening Mickey and I watched one of the handful of shows we watch together, Heroes. Mickey was thrilled to watch this show in HD. Personally I didn't notice that much difference. Maybe with LOST I will. That's going to be gorgeous.

So that was our long weekend in review. Hope you had a good one. Today is back to normal. Megan was lice free this morning so she went to school. Yea! I got my workout in while Kade watched Disney Channel. Time for my shower. Have a good week.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Joys of School and a New Doc

¡Warning!  The Standifords are QUARANTINED due to LICE!  Yuck.  Megan has had an itchy head for the last few days.  She went to the school nurse yesterday or the day before and she didn't see anything.  I took her to our new doctor, Dr. Teters, today and it turns out she does have lice.  That means we all could have it.  We went to Target and got some one step shampoo treatment.  We all lathered up with the shampoo and waited the 10 minutes.  The reds didn't have any.  Mickey didn't have any.  I didn't have any. We all lucked out.  Now I have to attend to a lot of laundry and tomorrow tackle a lot of vacuuming.  Like I didn't have a bunch of other things to do already with Super Saturday two days away.  But I will put Megan to work tomorrow since the doctor suggested I keep her home, just in case.

So we went to the new doctor's office today and the nurse that called us back is my cousin's (Robb) wife's (Jamie) mother, Lori.  (I know, confusing.)  And then when we went back to the room we saw our former nurse, Troy.  It was nice to already know people in a new place.  We really liked our doctor.  Thanks, Jordan, for the suggestion.  Although I had to do a double take because he looked nothing like his picture from the link above.  He has a mop of hair on his head.  It kind of threw me since I wasn't expecting it.  Can't he update his picture?

Happy Birthday Dad!

Yesterday was my Dad's birthday and we got a chance to celebrate with him for a little while. Kelly made him a "Death by Chocolate" cake and we stopped and picked up some Papa John's pizza and breadsticks before going over to my parents house. One of the reasons for getting Papa John's was to support the girls' school which was having a fund raiser and Papa John's was donating 20% of the order price to their school.

We had dinner, a birthday singing, some cake and chatted for a little bit while the kids played outside and with the water. Somehow Kade ended up being all wet and Megan was apologizing but I'm not sure what exactly happened there. It ended up being a Barnes and Noble birthday for my Dad as we got him a gift card as his present and my sister had the same idea as well. Guess he'll be doing some book shopping in the near future. Megan wants to go too because she got the same present from Tia also.

Hope the big birthday bash up at the range was all it was cracked up to be! :-)

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Two More Down

Today was a busy afternoon. Meg's been wanting her hair cut for a few days but there hasn't been much time lately. So today was the day. She wanted her hair very short, meaning above her ear. I said that was too short and talked her into cutting it to chin length. It's a cute cut for her. Her hair is thick and straight. It has to get cut right or you can see the mistakes. I think I did pretty good the first time. She actually sat really still. Again I was already in the process when I thought of the before picture. What's wrong with me?

Kelly the Beautician

Next was Mat. Her hair is thin and has body so I love to cut it, less work and the mistakes don't show so much. Mickey came home in the middle of this haircut and got a picture of me at work. Mat looks really cute with short hair. She's such a little pixie. Mat's the little wiggly one. I can't get her to sit still at all. It's rather annoying sometimes. She doesn't have a before picture either, why should she if the others don't?

Here are the afters of the girls:

Meg's Haircut I

Meg's Haircut II

Mat's Haircut I

Mat's Haircut II


One Down...Two to Go

This afternoon Kade got a much needed haircut. (All the kids need one. Now I'll have to tackle the girls.) This morning it was sticking out in several directions, this is after I wet it down. Kade's probably the best one at sitting for a hair cut. (I do the cutting. I don't like to spend money on my haircuts so there's no way I'm paying for the kids unless I mess up.  That's only been once.  I do everyones' but Mickey's, I don't do clippers very well.) While I was cutting I realized I didn't get a before picture. Darn. You'll just have to appreciate the afters more. After I finished I asked him what he thought. He said it was perfect. Almost, I did have to do two touch-ups.

Kade's Haircut I

Kade's Haircut III

Kade's Haircut II

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Soccer Recap and Schedule

Yesterday on Megan's birthday she had a great soccer game. In the first quarter she played goalie and successfully stopped three shots on goal. She also was instrumental in helping her team score a couple of goals as she quickly got them back on transition with her quick passes. In the second quarter she came out on offense and scored her first goal of the season. It was quite a game for the birthday girl.

I would have taken pictures but I ended up taking Kaden and Mattey with me and it is a little difficult being a fan, a parent, and a photographer. One of these games I will get some action shots. Speaking of the other games, I have posted the schedule for the remaining six games. You can see it here or access it anytime by clicking on the link at the top of the page.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

It's official...We have a 9 year old.

Megan turned 9 today!  I'm not old enough to have a  9 year old.  Megan started celebrating her birthday yesterday at school.  I made roll out cookies for her class.  And Mickey took her a rose at school.  This morning she played soccer at Knollwood.  (I only know that her team won 7 to 0 but no other details since I didn't make it to the game.  Maybe Mickey can do that some other time along with her schedule.)  After a shower she opened her presents from us.  We had some family over this afternoon for chocolate cupcakes and ice cream.  She got a few presents and I think they were all things she wanted.  That's a nice way to celebrate a birthday.  Here's the link for the pictures.  Happy Birthday Megan!  We all love you.  We hope all your nine wishes come true.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Eye'm Better

 Kade's Eye

Yes, I know the title's a typo.  By eye I'm referring to Kade's eye.  Last Friday I was laying down for a much needed rest.  It hadn't been more than 15 minutes, I was planning on taking 20.  Kade had asked me for some "rotten" milk, his word for chocolate.  We're working on it.  I asked him to wait a few minutes because I really needed to rest my back (and the rest of me).  I heard him get in the silverware drawer but I thought he was just getting a spoon.

Not true.  The next thing I heard was him screaming and crying.  I ran out and he's got a butter knife in one hand, the other hand is covering his eye.  Huge tears are streaking down his face and there's a scratch on his cheek right below his right eye.  Then the thought hit me...What did he do?  After struggling with him I got him to open his eye.  When he looked out the window into the light I could see a scratch on his eye ball.  Great.  Now what do I do?  A few minutes had past and he had calmed down.  He wanted a wet washcloth to hold on his eye.  I accommodated him.  After a few minutes of that he seemed fine.  I called the eye doctor.  She wasn't in. I called Mickey, knowing he was at the hospital with his mom and hoping Jan was there.  Jan wasn't there yet.  I haven't switched our doctor yet so I called the old one who's no longer there but there is a doctor covering his patients.  I got an appointment with her for that afternoon.

We got to the doctor's office and you wouldn't think anything had happened to him.  We are called back.  The doctor came in with her eye kit.  The eye had to be numbed so she could put an orange die in his eye.  She let me have a go but Kade is all worked up.  So I decided to hold him down and she could do it.  He is freakishly strong for a two year old.  The doctor left the room for a bit after putting the die in.  She hoped he'd calm down but I was worried he'd cry all the die out.  Yellowish-orange tears are a weird thing to see.

Kade did calm down a little bit.  Time for the magical blue light.  He got freaked out again.  She didn't even have to touch him.  The scratch I saw was the only one the doctor could see.  No real harm done but he will need to have an antibiotic ointment put in three times a day for a week.  I was happy his eye's fine I didn't realize what's in store for the next week.

We drove to Target to get the ointment.  The pharmacist, Maria, is great.  She explained how to put the ointment in Kade's eye.  I said "You realize he's two, right?"  She told me to do my best.  The first few times were a struggle.  Then I had a brilliant thought of him pulling his lower lid down while I put the ointment in.  That worked for about 5 doses.  Then it was back to the hard way, him getting pinned down.  I have one more dose to give him and then I'm done.  Yippee!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Birthday pictures

I thought I would post some pictures from Mickey's birthday for anyone that wants to look at my handsome husband. Love you, Babe. Aren't you glad you taught me how to do this stuff?

The birthday boy!

Cake and Candles Lemon Cake

Shhh...Don't tell the girls.

I have wanted to take Kade to the Potawatomi Zoo by himself and see what he's like there without the big sister influence and without being confined to a stroller. Today was the day. The weather was perfect, sunny, blue skies, and low to mid 70's. I had asked Kade last night if he wanted to go to the zoo and he said yes and got excited. None of us have been for a while. I was surprised that he never mentioned it to the girls last night. Maybe he can keep a secret. We left around 11. (I went back to bed after the girls left and Kade was into his "movie", the Disney Channel.) I really wanted to document this day. (It's sad but I rarely get to do anything with just one child. Let me rephrase that, anything fun. He comes on all the errands with me and I try to make them fun only so he'll be good.) So I wanted to take a lot of pictures and remember what he says.

We stopped at the entrance to the zoo. I had him sit on the bench out front and this little boy came over and that bothered Kade. I couldn't get him to smile for the picture but it turned out great anyway. Then I looked up and saw the entrance was all gated up. Were they closed on a Thursday morning? No. They moved the entrance again, maybe because they aren't so busy. So we went in and he wanted a wagon. I'm not renting one because we have a perfectly good stroller in the van. And I thought he would want to walk. I talk him out of it. (He would just want to pull it and not ride in it so what's the point?)

We started with the education center. There he checks out all the snakes and other creepy crawlies and says "More nakes". He doesn't stay too long at any one animal, which is fine. He lets me take a few more pictures and I try to get him to talk about what color the animals are or what they're eating. He did notice the lemurs eat broccoli. Maybe that will help him eat some next time.

The tigers were next. Flash was resting from his strenuous job of entertaining people but Ivory was pacing around and he liked looking at her. The camel wasn't interesting enough either and it was actually up close and personal today. He ran to the coy fish pond but stayed only for one minute and he was ready to move on. The red pandas were up too high in the tree so he couldn't see them. Then he spied the barn and wanted to go in there. We stopped for a Lifesaver Popsicle. This thing was big. It took him about 15 minutes to eat it. Or at least it felt that long. We looked at some ducks and Flamingos during this time.

When he was finally finished we walked over to the Farm Exhibit. "More animals." There we saw a miniature donkey, a calf hiding in the barn, bantam chickens with babies, rabbits, a turkey, ponies, and goats. We went through that exhibit rather quickly, only stopping at each animal for about one minute. "More animals." The Colobus monkeys were next. They are cute black and white balls of fur with arms and legs sticking out. Two were wrestling on the grass, they remind me of kids. We looked at some pretty and strange looking birds before making it over to the twin lions. They are brothers and have been at our zoo since they were cubs. They're names are Simba and Sumba. Don't ask me who is who. Then Kade had to feed the gross fish. They all jump on top of each other whenever food is thrown into the water. I got a picture so everyone can see what I'm talking about.

The chimpanzees held Kade's attention for a little longer than the other animals. They weren't moving around so I don't know what was so interesting to him. "More animals." We flew past the warthog, the African wild dogs, and the zebras to get to the Australian exhibit. We spotted some roos laying around. He ran up the red path to the pond but there wasn't an animal to be seen. Then he saw a black swan. I didn't let him get to close, they're not very nice.

Then he saw the train engineer in the Australian exhibit and kept telling me "choo choo". I knew that's what was really driving him to get through all the animals. The Choo Choo of course. We could have walked right to the train without looking at any animal and he would have been happy. He's a boy, right? The engineer left with us and we climbed on the train. (Kade could have climbed up on the engine for a picture but he was being shy at the moment and wouldn't do it. He'll regret it later.) Merle, the engineer, chatted for a while with us and a few other people on the train, waiting for more people to show up of course. Then the whistle blew two times, meaning it was going to start. Kade was so excited. He wanted to jump up and down but we were told to not stand. I made sure I repeated that to him after the engineer said it. That way I'm not the bad guy. We took a slow but educational trip around the zoo on the train. We learned a lot of the animals names, that the zoo is 105 years old, there is a butterfly house ready for next year, and the engineer is the oldest creature at the zoo. I think Kade would have been happy to ride it again and again. He could since he is still free but I think he needs a little adult supervision still. "More animals."

We finished up the zoo by quickly walking past the alpacas, toucans, bear, alligators, bison, prairie dogs, and macaw. He had to sit on the statue of the Galapagos tortoise. I got a great picture of him there. I think he had a good time. I did. As far as I know he hasn't said anything to the girls yet. I did take a lot of pictures today, 113 to be exact. I didn't put all of them on flickr, only the good ones. If you haven't been to the zoo the pictures will give you a brief look at it. Maybe you will want to go on one of these nice Autumn-like days. Enjoy.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Back to School - Part ??

This is just another message in the continuing saga of me trying to finish something I started way back in 1991. I can't believe it has been that long since I first started attending IUSB. I'm slow but somewhat persistent. So after another year long hiatus from school I decided it was time to get back up on the horse and try to complete yet another class in my attempt to someday get a Bachelors degree. I am currently taking a Data Management class - talking about designing and using databases. So far I have been pretty well informed about most things we have talked about although ER diagramming is something new to me. Hopefully all will go well this semester and I will be able to check off one more class.

On another note I finally filled out the paper work yesterday to apply for my Associates Degree in Business. I completed the last required class in December of 2006 but I never filled out the actual request for the degree. This way I will have two Associate Degrees, that should be equal to one four year degree, right? Ok I guess not but it is a small milestone on my road to educational greatness - one which I had somehow hoped I could get to before my Sister but that obviously is not going to happen with her graduating this Spring in record like time (5 years). Way to go Tia, I'm impressed!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

A Finished Project

Per Janel's request I will be posting projects that I'm working on, mainly the completed ones. I think she misses seeing what I'm working on. I guess you need to move back, Janel.

This is a scarf I started for my plane trip. I saw this project done on Knitty Gritty and liked the way it looked. (This is were I got the stitch pattern for my backpack. Love it!) Plus it's the easy way to do horizontal stripping, knitting lengthwise. I thought it would be the perfect thing to work on while on the plane. I was very worried about my knitting needles making it through security. The TSA website says they are approved but I had read too many comments on the internet about people having their knitting taken from them. That's not nice. I got bamboo needles, they look less weapon like than the metal ones. I called the airline to make sure they didn't have a problem and I got through just fine. Even my blunt nosed scissors made it through.

Back to the project, the yarn is Bernat Berella "4" - the afghan yarn. I choose to make it in Winter White, Pale Antique Rose, and Medium Antique Rose. It's 100 inches long and about 4 1/2 inches wide. The 100 inches means I had 450 stitches to work in every row! I would like to make a hat to match and maybe if I'm adventurous enough I'll try for gloves.


Stripped Scarf IStripped Scarf II

My next project is for Mickey, a late birthday present. I had planned to finish this project while I was away but I took the wrong "material" to work with. The correct "material" is coming today and then I can get to work on it. I will hopefully have it done in about a week.

If anyone has a request for Christmas get it in soon. Michelle have you fixed the drawing for the gift exchange? If so let me know what you want.


Saturday, September 8, 2007

Happy Birthday, Sweetie!

I would love to send you off for a relaxing getaway but you have work and school. I can't do a video like you did for me but you have me here with you so that will have to make up for it, plus I will bake for you. :-) I want to wish you a very Happy Birthday. You are such a valuable part of our family. I don't know what I'd do without you. Thanks for all that you do: working, going to school, playing with the kids, helping with the housework, and loving and supporting your insane wife. We really need to come up with a good tradition to celebrate our birthdays since we don't need anything and the things we (really you) want are too expensive. Let's think about that for next year. We all love you lots. Have a great day!

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Where does toast come from?

I had toast for breakfast this morning. Kade had a bite of it and after I had finished and was of course doing something else he tells me he wants his own toast. This is simple right? The toaster is still on the counter. I pull the bread out of the drawer and that's when it all starts. Kade gets upset because he wants toast and "not bread". He's pointing to the toaster which is of course where toast comes from but the mind of a two year old doesn't understand that you have to put the bread in first. After a couple minutes of his lower lip sticking out, tears streaming down his cute face, and his arms defiantly crossed (I have to get a picture of that some day) he lets me try to explain. I said that he could put the bread in and push the lever down and watch the toast be made. This calmed him down. He sat on the counter next to the toaster, not too close obviously, and watched the little orange things glow. He had looked away for a few minutes and then happened to look in the toaster right when it popped up. He jumped and said, "Dared me." Scared me. Now he is happily eating his piece of toast. Another total melt down avoided.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

My Birthday Getaway

Since Mickey has already posted some of my trip I won't repeat it. He did forget to mention that I did get a seat on my original, delayed flight. Some people were moved to different direct flights and that opened up a few seats. (This was not a good way to start out my first ever solo traveling experience.) There was actually one seat open. I was impressed. But how do they manage to oversell?

Sunday I went to church with the Williams. I found a few things interesting in comparison to here. The people in the congregation treat their building with less respect than they do here. Every child had a snack and some were even coloring with markers! The people also seemed less friendly. That aside when I walked into the church I felt right at home. The interior was the same color as ours, although the wood work was just a dark brown instead of the two tone we have. Even the couches and chairs were the same. After church we went to Janel's parents' house. I met the Wilson family. I loved the orchard. (I have pictures of the orchard featured on Wilson Watch.) Some day I want to have a little one.

Monday, if you have read previous postings you would know I went to BYU's campus. I must say that it's not as beautiful at Notre Dame. They try but all the buildings are different styles which detracts from the overall beauty. With BYU being in Utah there aren't as many trees. It was interesting to see what another big campus looks like. They do have a nice bookstore. And the view of the mountains is great.

Tuesday was IKEA day. It was so much fun. Like Mickey posted I found a chair that I'm just going to have to go back and get. There were so many household items in that store. I'm sure I didn't look at everything. I ended up buying cups and bowls for the kids, an apron for me (I've been looking for one forever), and some flexible cutting boards. I only spent $13 unlike someone who will remain nameless. We stopped at the cafe hoping they were still serving breakfast but no. They had a cinnamon roll that looked so good. I lucked out because they were selling them in a six pack by the door. We all ate them. They were probably the best ones I've ever had. This will motivate Mickey to take me to the IKEA in Chicago. Later Janel, Linda (her mom), and I worked on some arches for the wedding reception on Friday.

Wednesday was my birthday. Janel took my to Temple Square. We even got to leave her girls with their aunt. We totally enjoyed the child free time. Thanks Emily. First we toured the Conference Center (I kept wanting to call it the convention center). This place is huge. It was like an art gallery inside. The walls are all made of fruit wood, pear I think. It was beautiful. (My pictures didn't turn out that well but I found a great one on line of what the auditorium looks like, so check out the link above.) The roof is literally a garden with fountains and lots of plant life. This building really is an architecture miracle. After the Conference Center we went over to the Temple grounds. We wandered around and ended up going to the Joseph Smith Memorial building. After admiring the lobby we needed a little bite to eat. We found the Nauvoo Cafe and had a sandwich and cooled off. It was hot that day. Then we went to the basement and spent a lot of time in the distribution center stocking up on church goodies: movies, books, and music. We then found our way to the top floor and had a great view of the temple and the conference center. (We really wanted to watch the Joseph Smith movie but didn't have enough time.) Not having a lot of time left we went to the Tabernacle, which is tiny in comparison to the conference center, and then the two visitor centers. The north one was more interesting to me. There are wonderful paintings of the life of Christ hanging on the walls and upstairs is the Christus statue. I do remember seeing this as a kid. We quickly made our way back to the car and to pick up the girls. We had a floral appt. with Janel's sister. The bouquet needed to be made for the bridal pictures. Somehow I whipped this beautiful bouquet together in about 30 minutes and I never panicked. That was amazing. Since it was my birthday we got a movie, it wasn't a good one, and carry out from Cafe Rio. The food was delicious, but a little too spicy for me. I'll have to see if Chipotle has something like it. I watched the cute video of Mickey and the kids singing to me, then we had Taffy Apple Pizza.

Thursday was kind of a relaxing day, at least in the morning. Janel and I went to see Pirates of the Caribbean 3 at 8:30 p.m. I had already seen it but was happy to see it again. We didn't get home until about 11:30 or midnight. We still had some things to get done for the wedding the next day. Janel's shirt was too long and she didn't really want to hem it. Neither did I, hemming is something I hate to do. But I did it, and it was the easiest hem I've ever done. Then Janel had to polish up her little bit for the luncheon after the wedding in the morning. She finally got it done and we went to bed around 2. Neither one of us got a lot of sleep during my stay. Sorry Janel.

Friday was Krista's (Janel's sister) wedding. That was at 10:30 but we had to be at the Temple at 10. It was beautiful inside the Provo Temple. I could really feel the spirit there. Afterward there were lots of pictures taken. I slid up beside the photographer, who was Janel's cousin, and took a few shots of the family. (These are also featured on Wilson Watch.) The luncheon was held in the Sky Room at BYU. I didn't see much sky since it was only on the 5th floor but the view of the mountains was great. After we ate there was a program but I didn't stick around for it, I was almost falling asleep. I made my way to the bookstore to pick out a shirt for everyone at home. Then I walked home, took a cold shower, and laid down to rest. After a little snooze Janel and I had to make a few (5) floral arrangements for the reception. Then it was time to party. There was a steady line of people ready to congratulate the happy couple. Congratulations Krista and Bryce. I went home a little early, still tired and I wanted to start packing.

Saturday started with Cinnabon Coffee Cake. I love this stuff. (I found the mix as Sam's.) Then it was time to make cards with Janel. I got her hooked on this craft so I thought I had better supply some kits to make while I was there. We made four cards and even Sage got into it. Then it was time to rest before driving to Salt Lake. We made it to the airport with plenty of time for me to check in and still get a seat. There were only 67 people on this flight, lots of empty seats. The flight was uneventful, just the way I like them. Mickey met me at Midway and we drove home, kind of. Some how he got off the road that took us to the toll road. Thankfully his phone has internet and we got a map to show us how to get home. It was nice to come home to the kids sleeping. Kade woke up at 1 a.m. and wasn't awake enough to realize it was me picking him up. He just wanted daddy. The next morning all the kids were happy to see me and they all liked their shirts. Then the normal chaos began. I guess I was expecting too much if I really thought they would be over some of it when I got back.

Thanks Sweetie for sending me away for my birthday. It was probably one of the most relaxing ones I've had in a long time. Thanks for taking care of the kids too. I'm sure you will understand my frustrations better now.

Thanks to the Williams and the Wilsons for making me a part of their family for a week. I had a great time. All those sisters.

Don't forget to look at my pictures on flickr.

Monday, September 3, 2007

A Laborious Labor Day!

Happy Labor Day to everyone.   I'm sure the holiday name doesn't imply that you have to labor but that's what we did today.   We were all up by 7:30 and my plan was just to clean the house.  The kid rooms were a little messy upon my return from Utah. (Trip details and more pictures will be coming in another post.)   I was mainly concerned with getting the toy room cleaned up so I could use the treadmill, which I haven't done yet.  And the floor in Megan and Mattey's room was no where to be seen.   When are they going to be able to keep their room clean?  Probably never.

The girls were fighting today as usual. Mickey and I talked about how something needed to be done.  We think they need their own space away from each other.  So I went on line and started looking for houses.  Sadly that's the second thing we would have to do to get a bigger house.  We have to put ours on the market first.  If anyone needs or knows of someone who needs a cozy, well taken care of house let us know.  We are nervous about the selling and buying process.  That would probably explain why we've been here for 12 years.  I'm sure it will happen soon enough.  For right now we decided to split up the girls.  We were going to put Mat back in her old room, now Kade's, but she didn't want to be in the blue and green room even though it's the same colors as when she lived in it.  Go figure.  So Meg moved into Kade's room and Kade will try to sleep in the bottom bunk while Mattey sleeps on the top in the girly room.

We were trying to get this stuff done so Mickey could help his parents move things around their house today.  Then Darrin calls and asks if we still wanted to move refrigerator out of the garage.  We said "Yes!".  He had the dolly from work and had to return it today.  So he came over but this project required even more labor.  The spot in the laundry room where we wanted to put it had a lot of, for lack of a better word, valuable crap stored.  So all that had to be hauled out to the toy room and then later most of it made it back into the laundry room.  We really need more square footage.

At the end of the day almost everything has been given a new home.  There are a few things that can get taken care of tomorrow.  There are a few pictures of our hectic day on flickr.