Saturday, May 30, 2009

Free Fun=The Ballard Locks

Yesterday we decided to take the boys out for a little drive. Connor, Joseph, and Elizabeth all have colds and have been stuck in the house for a few, we just needed to get out. So, we loaded everyone up and thought we would just drive to the city and back as usual. When we got into the city Travis asked what I thought of going to the Ballard Locks. We haven't ever done that...I've lived here for 14 years and I've never been there, so I said sure. (plus, it's free except a couple dollars parking) So, off we went to the famous Ballard locks. Here is a photo journal of our little trip.
In Ballard we rolled up next to this lovely little car. It's covered in old floppy discs! Notice the keys (like from a keyboard) all around the trim? The license plate read, "disc dvr" or something like that. Isn't that funny? We saw lots of people snapping pictures of her car with their camera phones. Gotta love the, um, interesting people who live in Seattle.
When we arrived at the docks, we were very happy to see that at 6 pm we no longer had to pay for parking. It was 6:10. Wahoo~a truly free trip. (o: Of course we had to do a family shot when we first got there. Notice the funny guys to the left that posed for the photo? I said, "Connor looks like he's the devil and Spencer looks possessed."
I just loved this shot. The right side was for big boats, left side smaller boats. The bridge is a train bridge and usually the right side is lifted up, but a train had just passed by so the bridge was down.
This is inside the lock for the big boats. It is nearly empty. They were just beginning to fill it when we got there. Can you guess how high the water gets before they open it? The green is kind of a give away.
The lock is almost full. We loved this cool house boat.
The locks were filled and the boats left. The people waved to our kids as they went through.
How many clowns can you fit in a phone booth?
Despite not feeling well, these children had a tremendous amount of energy!
We got to climb lots of stairs...but the view was worth it...
....don't ya think?
We were walking along side a guy with a dog. He noticed that Elizabeth was watching the dog very closely so he picked up the dog and introduced them. She thought it was way cool.

Ever watch "Deadliest Catch" on Discovery channel? It's one of our favorite shows. It's very intersting and most of the guys are from Seattle. Ballard is a Scandinavian town. (Nelson's are all Scandinavians so we fit in well there). Most of the fisherman are Scandinavian. (ever heard Capt. Sig speak Norwegian?) Whenever we go to Ballard I ask,"Can you see any of the boats? The Northwestern? Cornelia Marie? The Wizard?" I've never seen any of them there, but I know they go there. But, even though I haven't seen their boats, I have seen...

...the Lockspot. This is where they filmed the show "After the Catch". We passed a sign that said something about Deadliest Catch tours as we were driving away. We are so going to have to go back there soon so I can get a closer look...and someday I will have to eat there...someday.

So. That is our little spur of the moment trip. We took 100 pictures. We had fun and the kids slept well last night. (o:

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Memorial Day Weekend

We had a great Memorial Day weekend. Well, Saturday and Monday were great. Sunday Connor had a fever and has developed a bad cold, plus I felt pretty stinky that day (but I think my problem is lack of sleep), but otherwise...everything was picture perfect...which is why I'm now going to show you lots and lots of pictures. Enjoy!
Saturday, we took Travis's mom to Seattle. It was a gorgeous day! We went to our favorite little beach area on Alki, but this time we walked along the sidewalk and took some new pictures. Here I am with my baby girl. Like her flower? I made it! We had soooo many people stop to tell us how cute she was.
Here are the boys giving me a heart attack up on the high dock. You can barely see it,but there are wires to make up the "fence" I guess you could call it. We were really high up above the water.
The boys had a blast walking along, looking out across the water at the city.
Travis always takes all the pictures, so I snapped this one to prove that he was there.
Our group picture. It was nice having his mom with us. I think she really enjoyed herself. We wore her out with all the walking. It was tons of fun though.
Every year on Memorial day we go to Greenwood Cemetary where Travis's sister is buried to watch their Memorial day program. It is always very well done. This year I stayed at Travis's parents home with sicky Connor and (not sicky) Elizabeth and my dad-in-law. Travis took his mom, Joseph and Spencer. They said it was an excellent program again. Here are Spencer and Joseph at the program.
This Memorial Day was extra special because it fell on what would have been Kim's 40th birthday. Here is Mom and Spencer putting flowers on her grave.
Since Connor didn't feel good for most of the day, this is what he looked like. He sat in the shade until his medicine kicked in. Then he would run around and play for a while, then crash until the next dose. He is sitting here waiting for me to bbq his hot dog. Yum!
The boys dig all the dirt and put it on the little sidewalk with these spare bricks. Joseph makes an arena of sorts for his monster trucks and then puts on shows. Notice all the trucks on the ground?
Here's old blue eyes herself in another homemade flower band. (o:
She was talking to Grandma here.
I call this one "true love". Isn't that sweet?
And to end the day, Elizabeth got into her pj's and shades and looked like one cool chick. (o:
That is a very basic summary of our weekend. I have 300 pictures on my computer from those 2 days. (I LOVE digital cameras!) We hope you all had a good one too.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Nutrition and a New Baby Niece

First of all...we are discussing nutrition in school right now. This will cover the health requirements for the year that I have to do, plus, the kids just seem to really be in to eating and trying new healthy foods. I think a lot is because I do Weight Watchers and look for the healthier things and have healthier choices around. As part of the exercise part we are all training to do the 5k Step Out walk for Diabetes. I'm signed up to do it this year. It's in October, so I asked the kids if they would like to do it with me. I told them that we would have to do training all summer and fall to be ready. They want to do it, so we are going to do it. Travis walks so much at work that I have no worries about him keeping up. Plus, I think that it would be great for them to do something for a cause that is important to our family. My mom suffers so much from the disease...mostly from the crap that comes along with the disease...mainly the neuropathy. We really need to find a cure! So, anyway, here is a picture of the food guide pyramid that we made together. It's about 4 1/2 feet tall. Nice and big with plenty of room to put lots of healthy foods on it. Fun, eh? little baby brother, who already makes me sooo proud...just graduated and was sworn in as a Federal Agent! I don't know if he's going to continue being a deputy Sheriff and SWAT member, or if he's going to be getting a new job, but it whatever he's going to do...I know he will be doing it well. BUT he also did something else to be proud of...he became a daddy for the third time! His baby girl, Rianne Morgan (that pronounced like Ryan), was born yesterday evening. She was almost 9 pounds, and I don't know how tall, but looking at those adorable chubby little cheeks and legs, I'm betting she's not too tall. I love her dark hair. She's gorgeous. Here are a couple of pictures of the newest addition. (this makes me an aunt for the 23rd time! With 2 more yet to come!)

New little Rianne.
Here is Nate with his family. Doesn't Kristina look great? His little boy is Danen and oldest girl is Braelinn. In my mind, Nate is still as little as his little boy. I can't believe that he's a grown up daddy!

And, of course, I must post some new pictures of my own baby. She is growing waaayyy too fast! She recognizes my voice now and her name. She has rolled over on her own and just gets cuter every day. Her brothers looovvve her!
Matching her new baby doll in lilac!

Playing with her new baby doll. She was trying to suck on the head. She got mad that she couldn't get the baby's head in her mouth. Funny girl.

You can't see it, but her shirt says "Little Sister".

I glued this bow on her head with Elmer's school glue. A little water and it came right off. My friend gave me this idea. Thanks Tiffany!

Lastly...Joseph got all his monster trucks out and was putting on a show. He wanted me to take a picture of all of his trucks and post it for everyone to see. He says he hopes that everyone that sees it will be "impressed with his collection". Are you impressed? I am. You'd be more impressed if you could hear him name the driver of every single one of those trucks. Seriously. He can do it. He's researched it. It's insane. The kid can't remember his own address, but he knows the name of every stinkin monster truck there is. (o: (did you know Dennis Anderson is the driver of Grave Digger?) So, here is his picture.

That's it for now. We are off to run errands and get a practice walk in.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Growing Up Too Fast

Yesterday Joseph came up to me and said, "Look Mommy, I'm almost as tall as you!" He really is getting tall. He had to get new sneakers a couple of weeks ago. I think they are less than an inch shorter than the ones that I wear! He is also beginning to eat me out of house and home. Just today he had a bowl of cereal for breakfast. Then an hour later he had a big banana. Now he is eating another bowl of cereal and it's only 11am. I just can not believe how big he is getting. Actually, all of them are really growing. Even Elizabeth. She rolled over Saturday all by herself. From back to front. She wanted to get a hold of something she saw, so she rolled over to get closer to it. She is a determined little bugger.

Also yesterday, in church, I was watching the boys as they sat with their classes. Spencer was actually not sitting, but pacing up and down the pew, but Joseph was sitting very nicely with his class and Connor was sitting as still as Connor is able to sit. I was so proud of them. They are handsome boys and I am proud to be their mom. Joseph is now in a huge class. There are, I believe, 9 boys and one girl. They combined his class with the older class because his class was just him and the girl (Janina). So, now Joseph is with a group of boys that are all a year older than him. He has great teachers! They are a married couple. So nice. Their son is also in the class. Brother Bernard is our hometeacher. He is from Haiti and has a cute little accent.(totally irrelevant, but it's my blog) Sister Bernard is a French teacher, so she knows how to deal with kids. I don't know how Joseph behaves in class, but he is much more behaved in sharing time now. I think it's a combination of his great teachers and being with the older boys.

One funny thing. I decided in the spirit of wearing my nice sandals to church I would paint my toenails...then I had to do my fingernails to match. I am not a big nail painter person, so the kids don't see me doing it very often. When I came out of the bathroom all painted up, you would have thought I had horns growing out of my head. The boys were all fascinated with my painted toes. "Why did you do that?" was the question I got from all three. "Because I'm a girl and that's just something girls do sometimes to feel prettier. Don't you like it?" They all said they liked it, but kept staring. Then Connor says,"Are you going to "paink" Elizabet's toes?" and Joseph says, "No, she's too little. Maybe when she gets bigger. I don't think Janina paints her nails. I'm going to ask her in church today." Janina is the little neighbor girl that is Joseph's age. (they were baptized the same day. Joseph says he's going to marry her someday in the Temple~I don't think Janina agrees) When church was over, I was informed that Janina does not ever paint her nails. (she's kind of a tom boy~well...just a little I guess. Definitely not nail polish type) (o:

Anyway. I better get going. We are going to be making a giant food guide pyramid. We just finished talking about the water cycle (see picture on our Nelson Boys Academy blog), so we are starting a health unit. Fun times.

And because I can't have a blog post without a picture, here is a picture of Elizabeth looking adorable~even though she's about to cry.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Boppy and a Baby

I got out the Boppy the other day and let Elizabeth sit up on the couch and try it out. She liked being able to sit up and see everything. Also, she got her first baby doll. I picked it out, so of course it's purple. She loves it! She chews on the baby's hands and smiles at the little face. I LOVE having a girl! (o:

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


I just had to post to vent cause I'm kinda mad/frustrated. I'm going bald. Hello! It's bad enough I have found a gray hair or two, but my hair is falling out at an alarming rate and it's getting very thin on top. I'm afraid I'm going to need Hair Club for Men or something soon. I've got to keep it long so I can do a comb-over. Hello Donald Trump?

So, if anyone has any suggestions besides "take your vitamins", I'll listen. My hair has always fallen out after a baby...that's normal, but this time it's coming out in huge clumps and making me crazy! Rachael, should I cut it? Would that make it better?

Okay, enough boo-hooing. I neeed to go fold laundry, do dishes, and clean my living room. I really wish the place could clean itself once in a while. Wouldn't that be nice? I'll look at it like a good way to get my activity in. (o:

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

I'm Pretty Lucky

Don't ya think?

Saturday, May 9, 2009

A Special for PHD~We love you!!!!

(we mailed you the original pictures)

Friday, May 8, 2009


I posted this already on our school blog (link to the right),but it was a story worth sharing, so I will share it again.

We have had some difficulties with getting the boys to sit down and do quiet reading to themselves during the day. I decided that I would create a new "privilege" for the boys. The first part of this "lesson" was explaining exactly what a privilege is and how, unlike necessities, privileges can be lost. After they put on their pj's and brush their teeth, and before Daddy comes in for prayers, they are given a book that I have chosen (for now~in the future I'll let them make the choice, but for now, I am doing the choosing), and they have 20 minutes (more if needed) to read that book. I then go in and have them give me a verbal review of what the book is about. I ask them to tell me their favorite part, how did the book end, and was there any part or word that they did not understand. They are doing very well at this. They are approaching this as a special privilege, which is a good thing because they are reading and enjoying it. Before, I was telling them they had to sit down and read for 15 minutes before they could go play. Now that it's no longer a part of school (in their minds), they are very excited to read.
Here they are last night. Joseph didn't look very comfortable, but he was happy and read the entire book, so he can sit however he wants. (o: At the moment, they are reading fairly simple picture books. I think I will have them read picture books for a while and then get into chapter books once they have developed the good habit of reading (enjoyably). I tried to get them to do chapter books when they had to read and they really resisted me and said "boring!", but now that they are having the 'privilege' of reading, I think they will move into chapter books soon. I have them reading "Franklin" books right now. (we own several) Joseph read "Franklin Runs Away" last night. When I went in to review the book with him, he began to cry because he felt so bad for Franklin and how sad Franklin was in the book. He really got involved in the story, which makes me happy because the book came 'alive' for him. Charlotte Mason would call that a 'living' book I think. (o:
This whole homeschooling thing is quite an adventure., Not easy in the slightest, but so rewarding...especially when I see them reading enthusiastically, like last night.

On another topic, have you ever heard of a Bumbo? I have begun to see these things around and really wish I had known about it before I had Elizabeth and everyone was asking me what I wanted for her. It looks so awesome! Elizabeth wants so badly to sit up right now. She loves to be up and looking at the world. But...they are $40! (I was surprised to see them $40 at Walmart but $37 at Target) I'll bet they will come down in price once they've been around for a while. The really neat thing about these things is that they are being used to help special needs children that have difficulty sitting up on their own. I read on their site that they are now even making bigger ones for bigger children that are disabled. (or, as my Professor at Ricks would say...handicapable children) Anyway, I just thought it was a fun little product out there. Maybe my sisters (3 out of the 4) who are expecting can put this on their wish lists. They come in 4 colors, but of course, my fave is the purple one. (o: Hey Racheal, if you see one while you're dumpster diving...(o;

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


Not a lot of really big, important events have happened lately. We've just been going through the motions of life this week, but I had a couple of pictures to share cause that's what people want more than anything, right? (o:
I know it's a tad fuzzy but I love this picture! We took it last week on our hike. The boys had climbed a little hill and then posed at the top for a picture. Spencer had apparently just watched Bee Movie and did the funny face and thumbs up pose that whole day. Cracks me up.
Yesterday the boys and I went over to Grandma and Grandpa's house (Nelson). Joseph was watching tv when Whiskers jumped onto his lap. He was so thrilled that we had to take a picture. Whiskers loves the kids and they love him.
Travis snapped a whole bunch of pictures of Elizabeth the other night while I was talking to her. She was being so cute. Then we noticed that you can really see the hair that she is gaining. I was kind of mad when she was born because we were expecting her to have lots of hair like Joseph and Connor (remember the ultra sound tech said she could see hair?), but it's already beginning to come in nicely. She has a lovely shaped head at least. I wish I had more headband thingy's though. I need to learn how to make them.
I just loved this picture cause when I look at that little face I just want to kiss it!
Bishop Bement and his wife gave us this dress. It's so beautiful! She wore it to church Sunday. I took her over to Sister Bement and said, "Here she is in your dress...and she matches you today!" (Sis. Bement was wearing red also) So, Sis. Bement says, "Well then I guess I will have to hold her." I gave up Elizabeth for almost all of Sacrament meeting and watched her get passed down the pew to the Bement girls and most of the people on the pew it seemed. She loved it and it was a nice little break for me. They thanked me for letting them hold her. I was happy to have a free pair of hands for a while. (o:
I think Elizabeth loved the dress too!