Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A funny little story

Just a quick little story. It's about Connor, which should come as no surprise because that kid is so active that I could tell stories about him all day. My other two boys are wonderful children that generally play nicely with each other and do a pretty good job at staying out of trouble. Connor, on the other hand, lives for finding trouble. He is not a malicious child and doesn't mean to do naughty things, it's just his nature.

Well, this story is actually not a naughty story. (although it does contain nudity) Connor is very observant. He especially loves watching his father. The other night, he and Spencer were playing some sort of game "using their imaginations" as Spencer put it. They were in the main bathroom. I went to check on them because I could hear Spencer laughing and Connor talking and I was curious. I go in there and don't see Connor right away. Then I hear him making a pretend water sound in the shower. I look down on the floor and see all of Connor's clothes. "What are you guys doing?" I ask Spencer.
"Connor is pretending to be Daddy. I'm just keeping him company while he pretends."
"Oh, what are you pretending Connor?"
Connor then peeks out behind the shower curtain and says, "I'm being Daddy and I have to get ready for work to make money for the family!" Then he shuts the curtain and continues making water sounds.
I ran and got Travis to come see. We peek in and there is Connor, naked, scrubbing his back with his dads back brush, having a ball. Then he climbs out and starts drying himself off with his dads towel. All the while telling us that he really needs to get going to work. I asked him if he worked at Kohl's too, just like Daddy, and he looked at me like I was crazy.
"No! Mommy, I work at McDonald's, remember?!"
"Oh, sorry. My mistake. How could I forget."
He got himself dressed, got his toy truck and pretended to go off to work. He took Spencer with him. I don't know if this sounds as cute as it really was. Seeing him mimic his dad and having the desire to "earn money for the family" was just so sweet. He was soooo super serious the entire time too.

Anyway, I thought it was cute. And it was nice that he wasn't doing anything that would ruin anything. Last week he peed in his desk cause "it was a silly thing to do", and then he colored the entire bottoms of his feet purple and walked all over the house before they dried, so I had to clean purple footprints out of the carpet. He's a turkey! But he has a huge love for life and his family and he's dang cute so I think I'll keep him...for now. (o:

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas Day and Snow (still!)

So, Christmas was quite a success. The worst part of the whole day was that Grandma and Grandpa Nelson were snowed in and couldn't come over for Christmas dinner, and Grandma Teese and Grandpa Clair refused to drive up from Atlanta, but otherwise, we had a really great day. Thank you to all who sent gifts. Here are a few pictures of the morning and also of the SNOW. Travis took lots of pictures of the snow because he could not remember ever having a white Christmas before. On the news last night they said that since 1891, this is only the 10th!!!! white Christmas Seattle has had. Pretty amazing, eh? So, anyway, enjoy the pictures.
Joseph was beside himself with excitement. We had to make him stop tearing into things and go wake up his brothers.
Spencer was so excited to get his Mega City. He sat and studied the box for a long time.
Connor got his firetruck. (and yes, they make lots of noise)
The good daddy helping free the toys from their boxes.
Joseph's police car. He says, "he doesn't want to actually be a policeman when he grows up, but he likes police things because he admires the police and that his Uncle Nate is a Deputy Sheriff, which he thinks is pretty cool."
Grandma Teese got everyone their own movie. We've never seen Kung Fu Panda. Spencer was excited to get it though. If it teaches my boys to be any more wilder (adding karate to our home), I'm sending them to you, Mom! (o:
We haven't seen Wall-e yet either, but Joseph really wanted it. They are out there watching it right now. Joseph is coming in and giving me blow by blow action reports.
Connor and Joseph love their loud, fancy new vehicles.
Ugh. This is cute of the kids. Not so cute of my 5 chins and gigantic belly! But, we had to include Elizabeth somehow. Right? I'll be so glad when next month arrives so she can arrive!
Elizabeth got her own box of adorable clothes and blankets. Thanks Mom!
Joseph helped Spencer assemble the Mega City in their room. They played in there together for literally hours. Connor was allowed to go in and watch, but not touch.
These two are really best friends!
And then, there is the snow....
This is a tree in the parking lot behind our apartment. Pretty isn't it?
This is our parking lot. There is ice under all that snow too. See Travis's cute little red '86 Ford Escort? That thing is falling apart, but is a workhorse! Gets him where he needs to go~even through all the snow.
That concludes our photo story of Christmas morning. All of us are sick with colds except Travis, but we were still able to enjoy the holiday because we were together. I made a turkey and we ate until we all nearly slipped into a tryptophan coma and just enjoyed each others company. I believe it was one of the best Christmas's ever!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

It's Christmas Eve!!!

Christmas is here! It seems like it came really fast this year. Maybe it's because I wasn't ready this year, so I was kind of dreading it. Things you dread always happen much quicker than things you want to have happen. Right? Well, needless to say, it's here and I think I am pretty much ready. The snow has caused some major upsets in our home. We were supposed to have Grandma and Grandpa Nelson over for Christmas dinner, but it's looking very not promising for that now. They live on a hill and we live on a hill and there's this big old valley in between us. Valley=slippery hills. Just don't know about them driving on that. They say it's supposed to be warming up soon and melting all the snow. Hooray for rain! Snow was nice, but I prefer my cold Seattle rain. (o:

So, anyway, I thought I would post a couple of pictures since I haven't done that much picture stuff the past few days. Here they are for your enjoyment.
Connor has a bad cold. He's not sleeping very well at night. He NEVER naps during the day. (he stopped when he was one) But, yesterday, he was watching the Christmas movie, "Small One" and this is what happened. He heard the camera and started opening his eyes. But...
It wasn't long before he looked like this. He slept for about an hour, and because of that hour, he was up last night 2 1/2 hours past his bedtime. Just look how sweet and innocent he looks.
Everyone seems to be putting a picture of their trees on, so here is a kinda blurry picture of ours from the night we put it up. It looks nothing like this now~what with Joseph and Connor constantly "trimming" it, and Connor rearranging all the ornaments. Oh, and Connor was playing with the lights and now one strand no longer works. Oh well. It's still a tree in our living room. (o:
Here is a picture of the snow we have been talking about. Travis wanted me to have at least a couple of pictures of it to document that it really happened. We have been breaking snow/cold records that were set a really long time ago. It snowed a lot more after this picture was taken. And let me tell you...Seattle sucks at the whole snow thing. They have 100 snow trucks/sanders for ALL of King and Snohomish counties combined! That's from here to Canada people. 100! No wonders the roads are horrible. But, when this kind of thing only happens once every 20 years or so, I guess it would be a waste of money to have more. I guess.

video

And here is the little video clip Travis told me to get of the snow actually falling. It looks like this outside right now as well. Just keeps coming. (please ignore the weather report blaring in the background. We were listening to it while I was filming and didn't thing to turn it down)

So, have a wonderful Christmas day tomorrow. There will be plenty of pictures in the coming days. Thank you to everyone for all of the love and kindness you have shown our family this year! We love you all!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

I'm So Grateful!

If anyone out there really knows Southpark like we do, the title of this page would ring funny. For all the rest of you, I really am grateful. I was sitting on my couch this morning looking at the disaster that is my living room. Then I looked over at our poor Christmas tree that Connor "trimmed" with his school scissors, and then at my 3 little devils we lovingly call "Legion", playing on the floor amongst the mess, being so nice to each other and being sooo cute. All I could think of was a talk President Monson gave in the April conference where he said to enjoy the moment. There will be plenty of time to clean the house and worry about having a perfect tree in the future when all the kids grow up and leave. My mom has said this too. Watching my little boys be nice to each other, thinking back on their prayers last night at bedtime and how long the prayers are getting because they have so many people that they want Heavenly Father to bless. All the kisses I get from them for no reason. I really am grateful for these children that I was told I would never have. They are my greatest gift. Now I am just waiting to put the icing on the cake with my little girl. (we're getting so close) I don't know what I did in Heaven to get so lucky to have the family that I do, but whatever it was, I'm sure glad that I did it.

The snow is still out there and people are still sliding all over the place. Travis couldn't even get out of the parking lot yesterday morning, so he stayed home from work and went in early today to make up for the hours. I had things that I purposely saved for the last minute in my Christmas shopping, that I still haven't done because I don't dare go out on the icy roads. Travis said they aren't too bad today so I will probably try it out tonight. (wish me luck with that)

So, that's it for now. Everyone have a great day. OH!!! One other thing. I've been laughing at Travis lately because he's been pointing out all the gray hairs sprouting in his head. I don't laugh because of the gray, but because he was calling me into the bathroom to check them out after he plucked them. Then one day he realized that he would be plucking for a long time because he's getting so many. (but not as many as his big brother~right Jeff?) (o: I laughed until the other day when I was combing through my hair and I noticed a FEW gray hairs in MY head!!! What the heck? Not even funny. I told Travis he gave me half and the boys the other half. I will so be (at least) highlighting my hair after Elizabeth is born! I'm only 34 for heavens sake! I mean, I have been married going on 15 years and am no spring chicken, but seriously...GRAY!!

Anyway, have a great day!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Winter Weather

I don't think I need to post a picture. You have all seen snow before, right? If I were down in Vegas, then I would put a picture of the snow. (did you see that it really did snow there?) (seriously...global warming???) Seattle and the towns close to it were in what they called a "doughnut hole" yesterday. Everyone around us got lots of snow, but we had nothing. We took the boys into Seattle so they could see the giant star on the Macy's building and check out the window displays etc. We got home and there were reports of snow everywhere, but not in Kent. Got up this morning and there was a nice little layer of the white stuff. I'd say about 1/2 inch, maybe more. Enough for the Kent School District to poop their pants and cancel school. (can you hear the children cheering?) Travis headed to work at 6:30 this morning. He got there okay. Funny how he gets to work every time, even when it's snowing, and half of work can't come in. He's a dedicated man. Anyway, that's the really exciting news around these parts. It's been really really cold as well. It hasn't gotten out of the 30's, or even close to it, for almost a week now. I know all you Idaho/Utah people are laughing at all the drama here, but it's usually so mild here. They canceled school in Seattle yesterday cause they thought it would be snowy. (and it wasn't) We usually are happy with a couple of days of snow and the rest of the winter just looking at cold rain. My kids don't even own heavy coats with mittens and knit caps.

Okay, moving on. Yesterday I went in for my doctor apptmt. I am now about 34 weeks. (I lose track these days. It just feels like eternity!) All things looked good. Even my blood pressure. My OB/GYN is so awesome. We've had him since I got pregnant with Joseph. He's such a great doctor. He got married right after I had Connor and they are now expecting their first baby. She's 12 weeks along and he showed me his baby's first ultrasound picture! It was so cute. He's so excited, he's giddy. He told me that Elizabeth is for sure going to be more in the 8 pound range instead of little like Connor, but if I went a couple weeks early, that would be good. So, mid January, I'll be walking everywhere, and if you see a crazy person driving back and forth over the train tracks, pay no mind, it's just me. (o:

Gotta go pick up the place. My visiting teachers are coming this morning and it looks like an atomic bomb blew up in my living room. I would normally wonder if my guest were going to cancel because of the snow, but one of my vt's lives below me. So, everyone have a happy Thursday!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Ward Christmas Party and snow!

Tonight I took the boys to our Ward Christmas Party. Travis had to work (he's closing and won't be home until 1am), so I braved it and went on my own with the boys. Had I had Elizabeth with me, I would have stayed home, but since I'm still conveniently carrying her inside instead of outside, I decided we would be okay. I signed up to bring a salad and heat one of the hams, so I was forced into going and not allowed to back out. (o: The boys were very well behaved. When other little kids were running around, mine stayed close by me, just like I asked. They ate a lot of yummy food and desserts. We had a lot of fun.

After the party, we went outside to find a snow/rain/slush/whatever had fallen and was still falling. It was very cold and wet! We drove to Covington, and, as promised, I drove the boys through a couple of neighborhoods where the lights are always awesome. We sang along with the Christmas music on the radio (and they actually sang the right words to Winter Wonderland instead of the naughty version they heard on the radio with Daddy~you know, instead of walking in a winter wonderland, the song says, walking 'round in womens underwear~I KNOW! I was appalled myself!) But anyway, we sang loudly and oohed and aahhed over the lights then went to Kohl's to visit Daddy. Just as we were pulling in, he called me and asked where we were. When he found out we were there, he ran out to the car, hopped in, and we all got to go with him on a little trip to the grocery store. He apparently got elected to do a coffee/icecream run for the breakroom for the weekend. It was fun getting to go with him and help him spend the company's money. Then we dropped him off and slid all the way home.

Once we got home, we all dressed in our clean, dry pj's and the boys snuggled on the couch with their blankets. I turned out all the lights except the Christmas lights and gave them each hot chocolate. We watched "Mickey's Christmas Carol", and then they all went to bed. That is where we are at right now. They went to bed, so I thought I would come in and post the pictures of tonight before I did anything else. So, with that being said, here are some pics of tonight...
Joseph, I think, is very photogenic. He does a good nice boy pose.
I had to take about 10 pictures of Spencer before I got this one. It's fairly decent. He LOVES pulling faces and being goofy when the camera is out.
Connor is just cute! He had so much fun being there tonight.
Like I said, Connor had fun. Look at Connor closely. See what he is doing? While we were waiting for them to start, he played with the foam cups. Such a goof ball!!
People coming in for the party. We ended up filling the entire gym. Lots of people, good food, and fun.
The primary kids sang a couple of songs for everyone. Here they are waiting for the songs to start. Nice skinny tummy Spencer has, eh?I thought this was so cute! They were singing Away in a Manger and Connor had his arms folded while he sang.
Santa came. The boys recognized him as "Brother Ramsey"!! He is our neighbor and manager of our apartments. I had told the boys when we first got there that the real Santa most likely wouldn't be there because he was sooo busy at the North Pole, so he has helpers that dress like him to help out. (that was the explanation I got from my parents the first time I recognized George Summers impersonating the big guy!) Joseph thought it was pretty funny that Devin was being Santa. His wife took a picture of the three boys with Santa, so as soon as I get it, I will be sure to post it. (I couldn't get a good angle of them all together)
That's it. Long post but very worth it! It was a great night and I'm really glad I took them. I was very proud at how well behaved they were and all the fun we had together. This was definitely one of those...I'm so glad to be a mom...nights.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Christmas Crafts

Yesterday we worked on some fun Christmas crafts. We made pomanders, homemade wassail mix, glittery snowflakes, and glittery pine cones, and soup mix. (the mix will be a gift) The boys had a lot of fun. We made a huge mess with little pieces of paper and glitter and cloves everywhere, but it was a lot of fun and the boys were very proud of what they did. Here are some pictures of our projects.
Here they are making their pomanders. They poked the holes with big nails and then filled them with the cloves. Our whole place smelled great last night. (notice our poor table? That's what we get for having very creative kids that like to do art and also homeschooling at it. We are sooo getting our money's worth on that table)
Here are all of the final products. The jar of powder is the wassail mix. Very yummy! The bean jar is a soup mix for Travis's parents. They love beans in a crock pot, so the boys layered different types of beans to make them look pretty.Close up of the pomanders and the pine cones. Joseph and Spencer cracked me up because they had to make a face on theirs. They have the rest of the orange in the back covered in cloves, but the front have little faces. Connor was so excited that he showed me his orange after placing each individual clove. The pine cones are ones that Spencer, Connor and I gathered when we went on a walk back in September. They painted them with watered down glue and then glittered to their hearts content. I'll tell you, between the pine cones and the fancy snowflakes, our place sparkles!!!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Dear Santa...

This year could very well be the last year that Joseph believes in the guy in the red suit. He has a friend that has never believed and has been working on him lately. Kinda makes me mad, but what can I do? Well, actually, I told him that not believing was their choice, but our family chooses to believe. (even Mommy and Daddy)Then I showed him Polar Express. (o: So, just in case this is the last year, I wanted to document their letters to Santa. We bought special stickers just for the letters. Joseph and Spencer wrote theirs on their own. Connor dictated to me what he wanted said then signed his own name. I thought they were so cute! Our boys only get one thing each year from Santa. I feel very blessed that they don't get the "gimmes". They have never wondered why they didn't get more. (this may not last, but for the time being, I will appreciate it) So, without further ado...letters to Santa.
Joseph made a mistake and had to cross a word out. He was upset about it and wanted to start over, but I assured him the Santa wouldn't count it against him.

Notice how Spencer, our future engineer, has his letter in a perfect square in the corner of the page. And he took forever lining up where he wanted his stickers to go. So precise!

Connor tried to hold the pen while I wrote the letter, but gave up half way through.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Baby Elizabeth

Yesterday I went in for another baby appointment. I also had an ultrasound to make sure that she is growing properly. She is already 4 pounds 7oz. First thing the tech said was that she had hair. That made me very happy for a few reasons. One reason is because I was raised in a family where the babies all had full heads of hair. A bald baby just doesn't look right to me. I've had 3 children so far and only one didn't have hair. Well, actually, Spencer had a bit of hair when he was born but it fell out almost immediately. He was pretty bald for about a year. Joseph had tons of brown hair and Connor had black hair. I'm eager to see what Elizabeth has. The other reason is because it makes all the heartburn worth it. What? You don't know that old wives tale? It's 100% true. At least in my experience of 4 children. My nurse had never heard that, but said she wasn't surprised. If you have lots of heartburn when you are pregnant, that means your baby will have lots of hair. I've been suffering and now they say she has hair. See? I'm right about this. I remember not suffering much with Spencer. I'm telling ya, it's true.

So, her head looks good, heart looks good, lungs look good and kidneys look good. Relief! Joseph had cyst things in his brain and Connor had bad kidneys. All were told to us during ultrasounds, so it was nice to hear she is perfect so far. Phew! Now I'm about ready to explode from anticipation. I REALLY want to just skip this month and get to January! But, since I can't do that, I am having lots of fun doing Christmas things with the boys. We are going out today to buy a couple of cheap strand of lights so they can hang some in their rooms. That will be lots of fun. We are going to make a paper nativity scene for our art wall tonight as well. I love the boys Christmas spirit. I'm really lucky. They are not really into the material things like presents as much as they want to listen to Christmas music and bake cookies to take to friends and put up the tree and look at the lights. It really makes for a fun holiday.

Okay, better run. Connor just informed me he had an accident and it's getting all over! I love being a mom!!!!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

This and That

This past weekend we had company. Yay for company! A dear friend from my high school days came and stayed a night with us. Jenny Hodge! Well, she won't be Jenny Hodge much longer, cause she's gettin' hitched! Then she'll be Jenny Van Gieson. It was so fun to sit and talk to her and catch up on, oh, I think about 14 years of stuff that we've missed. (can I just say that Facebook has been an awesome reuniting tool for me lately) The boys loved her. Especially Connor. She was forced to read "There's a Monster at the End of This Book" and to listen to all the great details of all Lego cars invented in our home. Travis finally took Joseph and Connor out for a drive so we could talk in peace. (Spencer stayed home and played SIM City) She stayed less than 24 hours, but it was a lot of fun. We love you Jenny Hodge!

We are finding that since I have quit working, they have been taking advantage of the extra nights Travis has open and using them. He has been closing a lot lately. (We are happy that he has a job and not complaining.) He isn't getting home until after 1am each night because Kohl's is open until midnight practically every night now. So, for all you shoppers out there that really like to go shopping after the kids go to bed, head on down to Kohl's. They are open. (o:

Lately, the boys have been really interested in vocabulary. That's all they want to do is read and learn new vocabulary words. They have been playing on PBS Kids a lot lately, particularly Martha Speaks and Word Girl. I can't believe how much these kids can absorb and then actually use correctly. Yesterday Travis was getting after the boys for knocking our nice headphones on from the computer onto the floor. Joseph said, "Oh Daddy, we are really sorry about that." Then he turns to me and says, "Daddy really appreciates it when we apologize." I thanked him for that information.

Then, this morning, Joseph and Spencer were trying to carry on a conversation using as many of the new words as possible (on purpose). The conversation went something like this...

Joseph: "Spencer, Bert (his guinea pig), is really adorable, but he can be quite vicious. (looks at me and says) Vicious means violent and mean."

Spencer: "He can be a little vicious, I agree. Thank you for clarifying that." Then looks at me and says, "Clarify, you know, to clear things up."

Joseph: "Both guinea pigs like to devour celery though." (looks at me and says) "Devour means to gobble down food."

Spencer: "I love to devour food! Especially healthy food. But right now I think I will go read my SIM City instruction manual and learn how to make a sea port and ferry terminal. SIM City is my thing you know."

Joseph: "Mommy, did you know that colossus means really big? Oh, and I'm now going to show you a commercial that I made up about expand and contract. Did you know that expand means getting bigger and contract means getting small? I think that is very interesting." Then he proceeded to reenact a little ditty from Marth Speaks about expanding and contracting.

And to make sure that I don't leave Connor out, the other day I gave each kid a cup of orange juice. I had just made it and wasn't really cold so I stuck an icecube in each cup. When Connor saw the the ice he said,"Hey, there's an ice in my cup. Ice is 'versible' change Mommy?" Joseph and Spencer jumped in and told him how smart he was that he knew that ice was reversible change and then told him that cookie dough was an irreversable change. I just sat back and admired how clever my children sounded and thankful that even Connor was picking up some stuff that I teach.

Anyway, that's all for now. I just got such a kick out of Joseph and Spencers conversation this morning. I love my boys!!!! Okay, gotta go.