Friday, December 31, 2010

The Chronicles of Narnia

Remember this post where I mentioned that we were reading the Chronicles of Narnia? Well, today we FINISHED! Yes - in 2010 my girls & I read the entire (not abridged) 7 books in the Chronicles of Narnia. It wasn't even a goal I really set for 2010, but we were so close that I decided to read the last 6 pages today. No - we haven't seen the movies yet. I'm not entirely sure I want them seeing all that violence, so if you know of a Narnia movie series geared to the little ones, let me know.
Can even say how much I love these books? Love. them. And I am so thankful that my children love them, too. It was our nap time/quiet time ritual the past year to cuddle up & read a few pages of this beautifully illustrated, amazing adventure. At first I just read to McKinley, but then I decided to read to both of them as Ireland was going to sleep. Now Ireland often asks for Narnia every time she lays down for bed.
I could seriously do an entire blog for this series, but I wanted to jot down a few of my favorites:

The Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe: I can never read this passage without tearing up - feeling the endless deep hurt & humility: "The Hags made a dart at him and shrieked with triumph when they found that he made no resistance at all. Then others - evil dwarfs and apes - rushed in to help them, and between them they rolled the huge Lion, over on his back and tied all his four paws together, shouting and cheering as if they had done something brave, though, had the Lion chosen, one of those paws could have been the death of them all. But he made no noise, even when the enemies, straining and tugging, pulled the cords so tight that the y cut into his flesh. Then the began to drag him toward the Stone Table."

The Horse & His Boy: Aravis & Shasta get chased by lions. Aravis gets attacked by a lion outside of the Hermit's lair. Later Shasta meets Aslan and Aslan says: "I was the lion. I was the lion who forced you to join with Aravis. I was the cat who comforted you among the houses of the dead. I was the lion who drove the jackals from you while you slept. I was the lion who gave the Horses the new strength of fear for the last mile so that you should reach King Lune in time. And I was the lion you do not remember who pushed the boat in which you lay, a child near death, so that it came to shore where a mat sat, wakeful at midnight to receive you."
This gives me the chills & I remember getting teary-eyed as I read it. Aslan laid out how He had always been there - watching over him - even though Shasta didn't recognize Him. And some events that Shasta saw as great trials were all part of a big plan & meant to teach him. It gives me such comfort to know that Jesus has been watching over me my whole life & I'm sure I will be amazed in the end to see Jesus in all the places, twists, turns, trials, events that have been meant to shape me.

The Silver Chair
“Will you promise not to - do anything to me, if I do come?” said Jill.
“I make no promise,” said the Lion.
Jill was so thirsty now that, without noticing it, she had come a step nearer.
“Do you eat girls?” she said.
“I have swallowed up girls and boys, women and men, kings and emperors, cities and realms,” said the Lion. It didn't say this as if it were boasting, nor as if it were sorry, nor as if it were angry. It just said it.
"I daren't come and drink," said Jill.
"Then you will die of thirst," said the Lion.
"Oh dear!" said Jill, coming another step nearer. "I suppose I must go and look for another stream
then."
"There is no other stream," said the Lion.

The Last Battle: Even though the dwarfs were on the other side of the door, in the "real Narnia", they refused to be "taken in" They said they were still in the stable. They said all the could see was darkness. They said all they could smell was mucky stable hay. And yet they were in a wide open country. Bright, beautiful sky. Delicious smells. But no matter how Lucy & Jill & the others tried, they refused to believe it & would not be "taken in". Later, Aslan explained "You see, they will not let us help them. They have chosen cunning instead of belief. Their prison is only in their own minds, yet they are in that prison; and so afraid of being taken in that they cannot be taken out."
Oh, this rings so true in our day & age - and in my own life. Even if you say you believe in Jesus, fear often gets in the way of truly letting Jesus take us out of our own selves, our own pains, our own hurt and see the big picture. The blessings! The amazing promises He has for us if we would just stop being so skeptical.
And another favorite phrase that was repeated in The Last Battle - especially when everything appeared hopeless: "...take the adventure that Aslan sends us"

I hope to re-read this series in a few years when they will understand more. Now, I'm thinking of the next series to read that will be wonderful for my girls. Any suggestions?

P.S. The cute bookmark above the book was a hand-stitched Christmas present by my cute niece, Tiarra. We used it all last year.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Junk

I don't know about you, but the week after Christmas is sometimes hard. The excitement of the holidays is over.
And let me be honest here... there's just a lot of junk.

junk candy all over the house
junk toys littering the floor
junk in my inbox
junk in my trunk

seriously.

I just sometimes wish this week every year I could hire someone to roll in, clean out all the junk and hand me back a nice, clean, organized home, a cleaned-out inbox & computer, and while they're at it, take some of this "junk in the trunk", too :)

I am looking forward to the new year & have some optimistic thoughts to come. But it felt good to get some of the junk out. Thanks!

Merry Christmas to all!

We had a nice Christmas this year. Apart from McKinley & Ireland waking up at 5:30 am - too excited to sleep - and Ireland puking right as we were going to go downstairs to see what Santa brought, it really was great! Christmas Eve was at my cousins and was busy as always. Christmas day was busy as well. We were hoping to get on the road to Richfield by noon, but I was worried that Ireland was sick & we weren't sure (it turns out, she just drank waaay too much water on an empty stomach when she got up that morning). McKinley & Ireland LOVED their new magnetic toys that Santa brought! We also were given the Canon HD camcorder we've been wanting! I have had lots of fun taking great vids.
Christmas morning everyone fixed such a nice breakfast. Our hearts were all hurting that Aunt Althea wasn't there & would never be. We sure missed her - but there were many things to remember her by - Cindy made beautiful ornaments with her picture on it. I gave a collage picture along with a Hawaiian calendar since she loved Hawaii. The gift opening was more hurried than usual, but everything was thoughtful & wonderful. My FAVORITE gift was a beautiful, personalized jewelry box from my sister Trisha. It had pictures of our family on it, and would you know? Inside there was a homemade watch from her & some earrings! Not only that - she put together these adorable clip art pictures (that she hand-colored) that had songs/nursery rhymes on the back. How cute is that? We also enjoyed our time in Richfield. We had fun opening gifts, eating yummy food, playing the Wheel of Fortune game on the TV, visiting, watching the older ones play the Just Dance game on the Wii, playing Dominos & doing puzzles. We couldn't have asked for a more wonderful, blessed Christmas! There were too many pictures to upload on blogger, so I put together the slideshow. Please click & take a look!



Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Hamilton Christmas Card Blog

If you didn't get it in your inbox, here's a link to our holiday newsletter.
Merry Christmas! And Happy New Year!

Monday, December 6, 2010

November Newsletter & Slideshow

Better late than never, right? We had a great November, complete with a morning at Wheeler Farm, a trip to Richfield, a field trip to the homeless shelter and the Church History Museum, a stop by to visit old Herriman friends (the Matthews & Warrens), going to Heber to see the Hoffmans, sledding, the theaters to see Tangled, and a wonderful Thanksgiving (even with missing the Checketts, Simons, Uncle Richard, and especially our Aunt Althea).


video

McKINLEY:

-One night the girls weren’t going to bed & mom came in to see why they were still up. McKinley said “but mom, I was just trying to complain to Ireland that there aren’t any monsters!” Hmmm – we think she may have meant EXPLAIN.

-One morning, mom went to wake up dad for breakfast. He groaned & murmured “but I’m so tiiiired…” Mom went upstairs then to go get McKinley, who was still asleep. It was déjà vu when she said “but mom… I’m sooooo tired…” Like Father like Daughter!

-One night @ the dinner table we were having chicken. McKinley looked at it & asked “Mom – what comes from chickens?” mom answered “chicken.” It was a defining moment as McKinley realized she really was eating a chicken. She said “but I don’t want to eat a chicken!” Mom said “yes you do.” She looked down & asked “is this it’s wing?” So… we talked about chicken breasts after that. And – you know what – she DOES like chicken!

-McKinley earned 6 points, so she got to go on a fishing date with her dad to Settlement Canyon Reservoir. He went to wake her up at 5:30 & she had a hard time getting up until he said “McKinley! The fish are waiting for us!” Jason caught 4 fish & McKinley caught 3 fish. Even though it was cold, she didn’t want to leave, even though it was 3:30. They had a great time together!

-McKinley loves to play the copy-cat game lately. She tries it on her mom a lot, but soon her mom starts copying her and the game ends soon J

-After someone does something wrong, McKinley will often interject with “Well, that’s why you shouldn’t _____” Like when Joshua used permanent markers all over the downstairs, McKinley said to her “Well, that’s why you should watch your kids more.” Also – one time mom couldn’t find her camera. After looking all over, she finally found it. McKInley said “Well, that’s why you shoulda looked right there!” We had a talk about how this makes people who feel bad already feel even worse.

-McKinley was brushing mom’s hair one day while she read The Chronicles of Narnia. She had a comb & apparently attempted to “curl” mom’s hair by wrapping it up in the comb. Needless to say, it would not come out and after 3 people attempting to release it, we finally had to cut some of her hair. Good thing her hair is long & thick or it would have been pretty obvious! Next time, we are strictly using brushes for hair J

-McKinley’s big news this month is that she LOST her first TOOTH (teeth actually – she lost her 2 bottom ones). The first one was pretty loose, but we still thought it would take a while… well, we were all surprised when she was eating an orange the next day & it came out! She was counting seeds from the orange & at first she thought her tooth was a seed! After it came out, she walked around saying “I can’t believe I loosed my first tooth!!” The 2nd tooth was loose for a week or 2 before she finally just popped it out herself! The tooth fairy came & brought her a dollar for each tooth!

-Grandma was having singing time w/ McKinley one day & asked what her favorite song was. McKinley answered that it is the song that mommy sings her at bedtime…”McKinley Lou, I love you. Yes I do. Yes I do…”

-McKinley was reading mom’s scriptures one Sunday afternoon. Mom overheard part of it: “And I say unto you…Amen”

-On Thanksgiving, McKinley was SUCH a big helper!! She did decorations and spent an hour or more helping grandma set out the plates, chairs, and food. Thanks McKinley!

- Dad stayed home with Kezia while McKinley, Ireland & Mom went to see the new movie “Tangled” at the theaters. We called dad on the way home & dad asked McKinley how the movie was & what it was about. Not a lie: She was talking non-stop the entire 15-minute drive home about all the details of that movie. It could have been a commercial for unlimited mobile minutes. So cute.

-One day McKinley decided she would sweep. She was getting exasperated that she was the only one working (hmmm – I wonder where she gets that from?) Finally, she put down the broom & said “Am I going to be the little red hen?”

-Mom was lovingly singing McKinley’s bedtime song “…I love my sweet pea, I love my girl…” McKinley interrupted & said “Mom – what does that mean? Like…(with motions) sweet PEE?”

-McKinley has really been thriving with homeschool and she really loves that Tiarra can do it at the same time – she really looks up to her. McKinley has already memorized a scripture (Alma 34:38 – a long one!), and is reading really well, and learning about the Book of Mormon and Character qualities. She is learning her skip counting and reading bigger words. Great job McKinley!!

IRELAND:

-Ireland & Joshua have really been partners in crime lately. One day, they locked themselves in the bathroom & when we tried to come in they would yell “Don’t come in here!” They were in there for about 20 minutes. We couldn’t find a key. Finally we had to unscrew the door & found out the reason that they didn’t want us in there. They were basically bathed in hand sanitizer!

-We still had the pumpkins from Halloween on the front porch, but they were looking pretty wilted & sad. McKinley came up & stomped on one and Ireland said “Oh dear! Oh my dear!”

-For some reason, Ireland really gets into cutting bananas. She won’t eat it unless she can chop it up for herself.

-We have a few different kinds of milk in this household: Skim for McKinley & mom, Whole for Kezia, and 1% for everyone else. Well, it just so happened that the Walmart kind is pink & even though it was skim, it was the only kind Ireland would drink. She said “Mom – the blue (1%) is for the boys and the pink (skim) is for the girls!” Well… why didn’t I think of that! J

-Ireland has had some regression in the potty training department this month. We’re not sure why, but we’re trying to stay positive & upbeat & hope she gets back on track soon!

-Mom walked into the girls room one morning & said “it’s time to get dressed!” Ireland apparently had changed from her original PJs to some dirty tights and another PJ shirt. Mom gave her a hug and was going to ask her to change again, but Ireland said “you’re welcome for getting dressed!” and off she goes…

-When Kezia is sad or crying (especially in the car) Ireland will sing “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” really fast. It’s so cute.

-One day when Ireland woke up from a nap, she was cuddling with mom & asked “where are all the kids?” mom said “like who?” She said “like… Joshua & Aunt Cindy!”

-Ireland is still loving her preschool & wants to go everyday. She’s getting better with recognizing her letters and trying to read.

KEZIA:

-Kezia is walking pretty well now! She is up to about 20 steps! Great job Kezi-boo!

-Mom has been putting Kezia in the sink to fix her hair, but that’s in the past now that she turns on the water every time.

-Kezia still loves to sign. She added “more” , “ice cream” & “banana” to her repertoire this month. Her favorites are still “hot” and “baby” though.

-She is also saying lots of words and added “banana” and “tiara” to her vocabulary

-Kezia is big into saying UH-OH now & knows what it means. We’re pretty sure she thinks the dishwasher is called “UH-OH” because that’s what mom says every time she comes over to get those knives out.

-When Kezi meets a stranger & they talk to her, she’s started to do this shy-turn-my-face-into-mom’s-shoulder thing. It’s kind of cute & funny.

-Kezi loves little chairs. Any little chair. She has toppled many times, but will get right back on there & sit like a big girl!

-She is growing up so fast! She still takes 2-3 naps a day. Thankfully, she usually sleeps really well at night now & mom is able to feel more human.

-Kezia is officially weaned as of this month! It was kind of rough on mom for a little while, but now Kezi takes sippy cups like a champ & loves her Ovaltine milk.

-Kezi had a really hard time with constipation this month. Thankfully, her system seems to be handling things better now, although we still give her molasses once a day. She was pretty sad there for a couple days, though L

-Kezi had her 1-year appointment with Dr. Daynes this month. He said she looks great & is in the 20th percentile for weight & 72nd for height. She had to get 3 ouchy shots, though. Poor baby L

-Kezia switched her SVT medicine from propranalol to Atenolol, which she only has to take twice a day. She also doesn’t have to take as much, so we are all happier!

-Kezi loves the princess sit-on toy that she got from Grandma & Grandpa Potts. She has such a fun time sitting on it & scooting it around. She also loves pushing it.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Gerald the Fourth

Last night was our Gerald the Grateful turkey activity. He's the fourth generation, and I have to say, the most handsome one so far!

We have much to be thankful for this year. Here are the ones we chose for our turkey (with my elaborated version at the bottom):

JASON:
-Family
-Health
-Savior
-Outdoors
-A Job

McKINLEY: (she cut out almost all the hands you see & wrote all her own)
-Hot Chocolate (grandma made her famous hot chocolate that night :)
-Ireland
-Scissors
-Turkey
-Mom & Dad

IRELAND:
-Jesus (she said this about 4 times)
-Food
-Body
-Chocolate Milk
-Mom & Dad

KEZIA:
-Signing Time (over & over she said this - I'm not kidding.)
-Milk
-Sisters
-Sleep
-Grandma & Grandpa

HEIDI:
-Music. Can you imagine a world without music? I can't. And I'm not even musically talented. But I TRULY appreciate the talents of others.
I can be hard to reach sometimes. My heart gets easily hardened and I tend to run faster than I should. God knows this & He lovingly allows music to reach me during these times.
I have been having a difficult time the past few weeks. Nothing major, but my journal is full of "woe is me"-isms. I have been "kicking against the pricks" as it were - everything seems much more difficult than it should. 2 nights ago, I had a hard night. Lots of tears. I woke up the next morning and turned on Pandora. The first 3 songs were absolutely, without a doubt, directed at ME. They talked about "crying in the night." They talked about God's love for me. Just in the time it took to listen to a few songs, my heart overflowed with the knowledge that I am loved - and that I am blessed - and that I am watched over - and that everything is going to be OK. I am so thankful for music.

-My Family. How can I tell you how blessed I am to go to sleep with the man I love and wake up to the pitter-patter of precious little feet. And to top it all off? I get to also be closer to my mom & dad while we're living here. And my sisters. I don't know what I did in heaven to be able to deserve such an amazing family - my little family, my extended family, my in-law family - but I am truly, truly thankful for each one of them. I LOVE YOU FAMILY!

-The Book of Mormon. My testimony of the Book of Mormon has grown exponentially the past year or two. I have found that I need this book. Every day. Just like I need to eat & to breathe. When I don't get my daily dose of the Book of Mormon, something happens... it's hard to explain, but let's just say that Satan's hold on my gets stronger and I feel darker. I am so grateful for this book - for the time spent translating it, for the money spent in printing it, for the lives lost in testifying of its truth. I am so very thankful for this book.

-Agency. This is a simple thing that I take for granted. every. day. I have mentioned before how we love to listen to My Turn on Earth. I listen to the arguments of both Satan & Jesus and how logical it sounds when I listen to Satan's plan - everyone will be saved! no wars and no strife! A wonderful life! I admit... it sounds captivating. And, yet... Jesus' plan - leaving the choice to us. Knowing there will be difficulties and trials, but knowing also that it is the only way we can learn and grow. I am so thankful for this gift. It is precious. I am thankful for a country that gives me the agency to worship the way I choose and to raise my children the way I feel is best. You and I may not agree on the number of children to bring into this world, who we should have as our political leaders, or the best way to reduce fossil fuels, but we have the amazing ability to share our opinion on such matters without fear of punishment. I am thankful for the men and women that have sacrificed to keep these freedoms.

-Being a Stay-at-Home Mom. Nope - it's not a glitzy title. Nope - the monetary pay isn't great. The hours are rough. But it's worth it. It's soooooo worth it. Yes - there are days when I feel like work would be easier than this, but a second later, I think about the reality of the work life and realize that I don't think I'd last more than a day. Maybe two. I love my little girls. I really do enjoy them. And I never thought I'd say this, but I'm actually enjoying homeschooling so far. Go figure! It's actually LESS stressful than when she was going to preschool. I'm not feeling rushed to get her out the door in the morning -and then rushed to pick her up. I know what she's learning. I am amazed at what she can take in when she's challenged. She's memorizing scriptures and we're finally getting around to reading all the articles in The Friend. It's so rewarding to watch her learn. I am SO thankful that I am able to stay at home with my girls. It is completely worth the sacrifice we are making financially.

It's hard when you can only pick 5 things for your 5 "feathers" - I have so many more things for which I am blessed & grateful. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Losing it!

We have reached a rite of passage in this household. Yes, that's right... our oldest lost her first tooth today! It honestly took Jason & I a bit by surprise. We didn't think it would happen until she was 6 or 7, but that goes to show you... McKinley is always trying to catch up to the older kids.
Yesterday it was pretty loose. I told her not to keep playing with it - that it would come out when it was ready. She kept saying "I'm trying not to play with it mom, but I CAN'T HELP IT!" It made me laugh seeing her playing with it all the time. Brought back memories.
Today she decided she wanted an orange at lunchtime. We were playing a game with guessing how many seeds would be in the orange. She counted one, two, three. I went in the other room to help Kezia & when I came out, she said "Look what I found!" It was her little baby tooth - she thought it was a seed! She was so excited. She just kept walking around to everybody saying "I can't believe I loosed my first tooth!!"
So- now we have the issue of the tooth fairy. You see, yesterday we were talking about her & I reminded her that when it comes out, she needs to put the tooth under her pillow & the tooth fairy will come & get the tooth & leave her money. She looked at me and said "is the tooth fairy real, mom? I think YOU'RE the tooth fairy!" Ok, well, I blundered through that, but seriously people! We need to go to Disneyland NOW before all the magic is gone! Much too practical little girl... so, um... out of pure curiosity... what is the going rate of the tooth fairy these days?
P.S. Speaking of losing teeth. Saw this video on AFV & it cracks me up!

and this one... :)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

October Newsletter & Slideshow

Happy November everyone! This year is coming to a close waaay too fast! the first part of October was kind of mellow because most of us were sick, but we made up for it by the end with lots of Halloween parties and Kezia's birthday. Hope you all had a great one, too!

video

McKINLEY:

-One day at lunch, McKinley was telling Aunt Cindy “Well, I’m going to be a queen when I grow up because, well I’m really beautiful and queens are, too.”

-We were supposed to go to Koda’s (a boy my mom taught guitar & the gospel to) baptism & mom could NOT find the stake center. She was getting really frustrated & even returned home. McKinley said a special prayer while mom went inside to find her phone (unsuccessfully) and it WORKED – we drove right there after her prayer! What faith she has!

-McKinley likes to sing Book of Mormon Stories… except her version is “givn this land, if you be righteously.”

-One day we were having a hard time trying to coordinate everyone’s schedules in helping to get Aunt Althea’s things out of the garage. Cindy & mom were talking & getting discouraged as they realized that they wouldn’t have enough help. McKinley was listening in the background & piped up “But Aunt Cindy, It’s OK - I’ll help!!”

-McKinley was so sweet one day, she just sat down & played with mom’s hair for a while. There’s almost nothing better!

-McKinley’s thing lately is to say “super” in front of almost any word, as in “I’m SUPER-tired or SUPER-sad, or my doll is SUPER-lost!”

-One day dropping McKinley off at preschool, mom said (as she does every day), “Remember who you are & have fun!” McKinley responded “You have fun, too, mom. And remember, I’ll always be right by your side.”

-McKinley’s preschool sent home a form for a cookie dough fundraiser. Mom wasn’t too happy about it because she was PAYING for the preschool & didn’t think there needed to be fundraisers. McKinley wrote on her cookie dough form at the top “I’m not having any because we don’t have enough money.”

-Mom helps at McKinley’s preschool twice a month & McKinley was always excited to have her be there. She asked every day that was preschool if mom got to help.

-McKinley has been SOOO cute with her little love notes lately. She has written numerous “I love you mom/dad” notes and one time when Ireland was having a hard time & crying, she wrote an “I love you Ireland” note & gave it to her & said she could keep it forever.

-We were sitting on the grass outside & McKinley asked why it was brown. Dad explained that it was the fall-time & it didn’t grow as much & mom said “yes, it’s going to sleep for the winter.” McKinley said “Well, I’d better not step on it or it will wake up!”

-McKinley can count to 30 + well, but every time she gets to the next 10 numbers, she wants to say 90…38, 39, 90!

-One day McKinley said “I sure love Kezia. I hope she doesn’t grow up too fast like me.”

-Mom came home from the grocery store one day with a pomegranate. She asked McKinley if she knew what it was. McKinley said “Yes – it’s a big radish!”

-One day mom & dad were “discussing” something & McKinley interjected “Mom! Dad’s older than you and he knows more!”

-McKinley sometimes makes random comments about Aunt Althea, who passed away last month. One day she said “I sure hope Aunt Althea is having fun.”

-One day McKinley was so sweet & saying “Mom – you’re the nicest mom I ever wanted.”

-McKinley had her last day of preschool on October 29th. After much pondering & praying, we’ve decided to homeschool McKinley for the time being. Her current preschool isn’t the best academic or moral environment (even though it was a tough decision because she got a better teacher the week before she left). We looked into private schools as well, but we’re hoping to be in a different job in the next couple months & it just would be hard to put her in & pay all the fees & then take her out again. McKinley was sad to leave her preschool pals & her new teacher, but she’s excited about staying home with mom & learning new things - and we feel peaceful about the decision right now.

-We were doing a FHE & McKinley was repeating a verse that her dad was telling her. He whispered “Unto the children of men…” into her ear & she said out loud “Unto the Chilly Men…”

IRELAND:

-Ireland has really gotten on the “reading” wagon this month. She will sit & turn pages & make up stories based on the pictures in the book. So cute!

-One night Ireland came to mommy saying her tummy hurt & she needed medicine. Mom said “hmmm – I wonder what kind of medicine I should give you?” Ireland said “The pink one!” Which was funny because she was talking about the ibprofin & mom was thinking about Pepto.

-Ireland’s prayers are still mostly short & sweet (Thank Heavenly Father – she says this instead of Dear Heavenly Father – thank you for the day. Thank you for blessings. Jesus Christ, Amen), but once in a while she will really talk about the things she’s thankful for. One day she said “thank you for heaven. Thank you for church.”

-Ireland is still eating with her hands instead of her utensils way too much. Mom was really getting after her one morning because she kept eating her frosted shredded wheat with her hands. Mom kept saying “use your spoon!” Finally, mom realized what she was doing. She would scoop up the mini-wheat onto her spoon & then turn it over so the frosted side was up.

-Ireland is big on opening the car door, strapping her seat belt, and opening her car window ALL BY HERSELF.

-Ireland still loves headbands. She loves to get them from the back of the bathroom door & put them on her head. One night she had one on & she pushed it over her eyes. Mom asked what she was doing & she said “so I don’t see the monsters.”

-Ireland has really gotten better with her drawings this month. She can do a face, eyes, hair and a stick figure body. One night she was making a drawing & mom asked what she was drawing. She said “I’m drawing dad with gray hair!” Dad wasn’t too happy about that J

-Mom put a jumper on Ireland one day & said “Do not take off your jumper. We have to go!” So Ireland went jumping all around the house & said “it’s my jumper!”

-Ireland just LOVES cereal. And she LOVES her PJs. It’s not unusual to find her in her 3rd set of PJs by 3pm. And it’s also not unusual for her to put on her PJs, go to the cereal cabinet, pull out her favorite cereal & come to mom & say “I just woke up!”

-Mom was working on her downstairs computer one day & Ireland came down & said something about eggs. Mom didn’t really think a lot about it till later & then she walked upstairs & saw eggs broken on the floor. There were only a few on the floor & she didn’t know where the rest were… till she looked in the fridge & saw a huge container full of eggs. She cracked 2 dozen eggs into that container (with a few on the floor). We had to strain the egg shells out, but it did make a tasty breakfast the next morning!

-The girls love to do “experiments” and we will find evidences of all over. One day mom opened the fridge to find a shot glass with play-doh in the bottom and 2 dice.

-Ireland loves to give fishy kisses. She makes a cute fishy face & you have to make one, too for the fishy kiss. The only problem is that you make the fishy kiss & go to kiss her & she gets the giggles. And more giggles & more!

-We call daddy “daddy-o” sometimes & now Ireland has incorporated that into everyone else’s name – “I don’t want to go in time out mommy-o!” She even uses Kezi-o & McKinley-o.

-Ireland also likes to say “silly goose!”

-Joshua & Ireland are still little partners in crime when they get together. One day we found them in the bathroom. They had gotten into the hand sanitizer & had gotten it all over their clothes & hair.

-At the end of the month, it snowed one night. Mom opened the blinds to show the girls. Ireland said “Wooow. Snow! That means we gotta get our boots!” and off she went. And wore her boots to breakfast.

-Ireland’s had a harder time going to sleep lately. She wants to stay up and come out of the room. When mom take her back to the bed & tuck her in she said “but YOU need to go to bed mommy!”

-Lately if we ask her to do something she doesn’t especially like, she will say in a naughty voice “I don’t want to!!”

-Ireland has had a fascination with rolling up papers lately. Any artwork she makes gets automatically rolled up so she can look out her “telescope” or use it as a megaphone.

KEZIA:

-On October 3rd, Kezi took her first step! She’s up to about 7 now! Great job big girl!

-Kezi can oink like a pig. It’s so cute!

-Kezi is so cute with talking on the phone now. She loves to put it to her ear & say “hi!” and when her daddy calls at lunchtime, she gets so excited & says “hi! Da-da!” over & over.

-Kezi can also say “Thank you!” and “Signing Time” and “Amen”

-Kezia loves to crawl around with this fake, but big knife. People do double-takes when they see her with this huge knife & putting it in her mouth.

-Kezia can sign: hot, grandma, & all-done!

-She can do the actions for eensy-weensy spider. So cute!

-Kezia likes to get her foot up on her high chair tray.

-She’s doing this hilarious face right now. Mom gets out the camera & says “cheese!” and Kezi will open her mouth & crinkle up her nose. It’s so funny!

-Kezia was really sick for a couple weeks this month. It started out as a runny nose, but then she got really miserable. She was teething, had the flu, and we found out had a bad ear infection. She certainly wasn’t herself & it took a while to get better, but we are all grateful that we have our sweet Kezi back.

-Kezi is tall enough now to get on her tippy tippy toes & play grandma’s piano.

-One day, mom was on hold with the credit card company. It was an system that would recognize your voice. The recorded lady was saying “which menu option would you want…” Mom had Kezia on her lap & she was gabbing away while mom was talking on the phone. It got to another prompt & Kezia was talking & the voice said “OK, I’ll get your right over to the fraud department. Thank you!” Looks like we need to get one of those voice recognition systems!

-On October 26th, our beautiful, sweet baby girl turned ONE! It’s so hard to believe that she’s already a year old. We sang to her in the morning (grandma played guitar the best she could with an injured wrist from a Kayak accident on her vacation), she got to wear her sparkly crown (well, Ok – that lasted for about 5 seconds) and she had her special tablecloth. She opened up her gift from mom & dad which was an alligator that you can stack things in & pull around. She got to let go of a balloon later that afternoon and open more presents. Grandma Devenish got her cute new shoes & Grandma Potts got her a book & some money which we used to pull her a sit-on toy. She had cake & ice cream that night & got some new bath letters & numbers, too. On the 29th, the Bensons came over & we celebrated her birthday & Kezia’s birthday. Everyone wore their costumes & got to decorate cupcakes. It was so much fun! Happy Birthday Kezia!!!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Kezia's Birthday & Halloween

My sweet Kezi-boo turned one last Tuesday! With a home birth, a difficult recovery, and 4 days at Primary Children's, it's been an eventful first year... and I wouldn't trade it for the world! She is so precious to me. Her smiles, laughs, babbles, and signs are treasures in my mother's heart. I am so thankful for her!
It was also an eventful past week with 4 Halloween parties, 2 birthday parties, and the actual trick-or-treating last night.
Below are a few pictures of Kezi's birthday (and some scrapbook pgs) & Halloween.







We were going off the "James & the Giant Peach" theme this year, since we read & loved the book. Ireland was the ladybug, McKinley was the spider, Kezia was the centipede, I was the giant peach (you're going to have to watch the monthly slideshow if you want to see that pic :), and Jason was supposed to be James. I guess he was if James dressed like Jason normally dresses. Anyway, it was a great Halloween & we all had loads of fun!





Thursday, October 21, 2010

Swing it!


I did it. I signed Jason & I up for a dance class.
And he didn't even know what was comin'.
Picture this: Jason gets home from work. Late. Tired. Poor guy.
7:30 rolls around (giving him just enough time to eat dinner). I tell him he needs to get changed into casual clothes cuz I'm takin' him out on a date & the sitter is going to be here any minute. He looks hopeful! She comes. We leave. I drive (which is highly unusual). He's sitting there trying to guess where we're going. Movies? (good guess... -and don't you wish!)... now I'm turning right on Redwood Road - the Army/Navy Depot? Uhhh.... nope. I turn into Taylorsville HS. A play? I'm being pretty neutral the whole time.
We walk into the HS hand-in-hand. Jason wonders if we're late because he can hear a play going on. I say "you don't think I would drag you out to a musical now do you?" (he hates musicals). We get to the commons & there is a security guy there & asks us if we're there for the swing dancing class, wherein I reply "yes, we are," wherein Jason pulls me toward the nearest exit. No - I didn't let him get far. We eventually made it to the gym with 5 or 6 other couples. I think he felt more at home there, seeing all the other guys with nervous faces & clenched teeth. While we were waiting for the class to start, he went to go get a chair. I admit that I was a tad worried that he wouldn't come back. Thankfully, he did. I even asked him if he wished I really was taking him to the musical. No comment :)
So - we learned some steps to the East Coast Swing. It was actually loads of fun. And I KNOW Jason had a good time, too. How can you be a grouch when you have big band music in the background and you are learning something new with your sweetie? It was fun to meet new people. It was fun to dance. It was fun to GET OUT.
Truth be told, Jason likes to dance. He did some dance in HS. We both took a ballroom dance class in college (though not at the same time). Last February we went to a stake Valentines dance & I'll admit - our dance skills were p r e t t y rusty. I've always wanted to take a dance class with my sweetie - and I'm excited I finally just did it! And surprised him! (Okay, so... most of the reason for that being that he probably wouldn't have agreed if I would have asked). In the end, he was glad I dragged him out & we both had a great time.
Here's to 3 more weeks of a standing date night and learning something new!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Homeschool learning follow-up post

Yes... sigh... I'm FINALLY getting around to posting a follow-up to THIS post. I'm almost glad that it's taken me some time to get it done, though, because some things have happened in the mean time (which I'll explain later in this post).

First - THANK YOU to all who responded. Between here, Facebook & e-mail, I got over 20 responses. Great questions, valuable insight - thanks for taking the time to respond. It's apparent many of you are passionate about the education of your children.
I wanted to do a follow-up post because I wanted to answer some questions that were posed & also maybe dispel some myths:

1. Yes, if you are having a wonderful experience in a public school and feel like your child is getting individualized attention in a wholesome environment, this probably wouldn't be for you.

2. I believe it's absolutely true that the more parent involvement in your child's education, the better your experience will be. However, there is a limit to a parent's power in public school. For instance, my niece was in a class with a difficult teacher. She is bright - and was not challenged in her classroom. My sister was very active in her education & volunteered frequently, but was seeing her daughter have a negative experience at school. She tried talking to the teacher and the principal, but the issue was not solved. Then she tried every avenue to get her transferred to a different teacher in that school, but was told there was nothing she could do. She ended up homeschooling her daughter for the rest of that year. This same niece has had a teacher quit or retire every year from kindergarten to third grade in the same school. Right now my sister is struggling with trying to get the new teacher, who yells a lot, to challenge her daughter even though the teacher is specialized in gifted and talented children and should already know how to do this. So - while being involved is important, it doesn't always solve issues that may arise.

3. A few of you brought up the social aspect. First of all, there would be plenty of socialization in a classroom with 10-13 students. Secondly, it's generally a myth that homeschooled children are lacking in social skills. Here is a study disproving the myth of lack of socialization. Most homeschooled children are not stuck in an isolated vacuum. Their parents make sure they have plenty of opportunities to socialize and problem-solve. From soccer to church, and from homeschool co-ops to playgroups, there are plenty of opportunities available and conscientious homeschoolers take full advantage of these opportunities.(See Becka's comment in my original post)

4. As far as the academic question goes, homeschooled children consistently outperform publicly schooled students. From one study: "homeschoolers, on the average, out-performed their counterparts in the public schools by 30 to 37 percentile points in all subjects."

5. People varied in their opinions about whether a teacher with a degree was important, but the majority said if they were going to pay someone, they would want them to have a teaching degree. If we did this, we would find teachers that had degrees AND were absolutely passionate about teaching and have the children's best interests at heart.

6. Some people mentioned that maybe something like this would be more important in the Jr. High/High School years & not so crucial at the elementary age. I disagree. I don't believe a child all the sudden falls behind when they are older. It's a gradual downward spiral & if they are "left behind" (and I mean that in all aspects) early on, it's only going to get worse later on. I believe in starting a solid foundation from the beginning. I actually think it's actually more important early on to make sure that their education is positive & then when they are older (probably HS), they have that foundation and are able to make better choices.

7. Charter schools are GREAT. They are a true blessing. There are just not enough of them. And, for me, I would be willing to pay a little bit more to have my child's education be gospel-based. To be able to have my child talk about God, to learn through Gospel principles, and PRAY in school would be an amazing thing.

8. Different ages of the children. Yes, it would be difficult, but homeschooling teachers are able to navigate a lesson with varied ages. They can give the basic topic, and then give different assignments related to that topic specific to the differing age groups. This is called differentiated instruction. For example, a teacher might teach a lesson about dinosaurs. The younger students would focus on the letter "D", the middle aged students would write sentences about dinosaurs, and the older students would complete a report. Of course, this is a very simplified example, but it contains the basic principal. Also, when you think about it, a normal Kindergarten classroom has such a varied skill level that they are dealing with the same issues. There are kids who can't even say their ABCs and kids who are reading at 1st grade levels. Teachers have to find a way to reach each student at their level and that's what a homeschool teacher would do.

So - there you go. I love that there is a discussion going on - whether you like the idea or not - and feel free to comment either way. The reason I am glad that I waited to respond to this is because of my current situation. My 5-year-old daughter reads at a 1st grade level, but she just misses the deadline for Kindergarten. She is getting "left behind" in a different way. The public schools won't even look at her until next year. This would be a PERFECT solution for her needs.
Right now, our choices are:

1. Send her to preschool again this year (Tried it. Not working, she is not learning ANYTHING new!)
2. Send her to a private school (we are currently looking into American Heritage - comment if you know anyone that goes to the South Jordan American Heritage)
3. Homeschool. Which at this point is looking more & more do-able if we're not going to be able to afford private school.
4. Try to create this homeschool school led by a teacher who would conduct it in his/her own home.

Some of you expressed that $350 was too much. Would you do it for $250? (with discounts for additional children) Just wondering...

Thursday, October 7, 2010

August & September Newsletter & Slideshow

So - I realize how far behind I am in my monthly newsletters - this one is for August & September, so needless to say this is going to be a ridiculously long post. Between the Potts family staycation, 2 races, 2 funerals (and putting together slideshows for each), a birthday, preschool starting for McKinley & Ireland, Lagoon, and just everyday life, let's just say I'm a "little" behind on a LOT of things! Still, hope you enjoy these!
:)

AUGUST SLIDESHOW

video

SEPTEMBER SLIDESHOW

video


FAMILY PICTURES 2010


AUGUST NEWSLETTER

McKINLEY:

-One day McKinley was trying to tell mom something, but she had a rough night & was zoned out. McKinley said “Don’t be a statue mom!”

-Michael was over one day & they were getting bored, so mom said they could watch Nick Jr. McKinley turns to Michael & says “Yeah Michael! Nick Jr! It’s like preschool on TV!”

-Mom asked McKinley one day what she wanted to be when she grows up (it changes a lot). This particular day McKinley said “I want to be a doctor and a fire-fighter, so if they need to be doctored then I’ll doctor them & if they need to be fire-fighted then I’ll fire-fight them!”

-McKinley’s imagination is getting better & better. She will constantly say “Let’s pretend that…”

-At breakfast time, mom went to give McKinley some golden puffs cereal. McKinley said “Mom – first ask me which one I want.” Mom: “which one do you want?” McKinley – “this one.” (points to the golden puffs)

-At pretty much every prayer time, McKinley will say “I want to say the prayer! Pleeease! I haven’t said it in a realllllly long time!”

-We were at the This is the Place Monument for the Potts staycation & were walking around the monument. There were some people there that spoke a different language & McKinley heard them. She said “Mom – I hear those people. They’re speaking Spanish. I know how to speak Spanish! Uno, Dos, Tres! Can I say hi to them?” Mom – I don’t think they speak Spanish, sweetie.” I think they speak Chinese. McKinley “I know Chinese from Kai Lan! Ni Hao! – Can I tell them mom?” Mom – “OK.” We walked past & McKinley got shy. She finally whispered “Ni Hao” as we walked by to no one in particular, but mom was proud of her for trying to reach out to people from different languages & backgrounds!

-One day we were playing pretend downstairs & mom was the patient & McKinley was the doctor. Mom was laying down & McKinley was checking her & shaking her head. Mom asked how she was. Dr. McKinley sighed & said “Well, you’re gonna hafta stay here until you...die.” Hmmm – mom was pretty sure she was going to say “until you get better,” but apparently Dr. McKinley is somewhat pessimistic.

-McKinley & Michael have been playing this army game & if you ask McKinley to do something, she’ll salute & say “yes, sir!”

-Mom was downstairs & came up to find McKinley on the couch. She said “Hey mom! Do you want to play this game – put tape over your mouth – it’s really fun!” Hmm – as much fun as it looked to put scotch tape over the mouth, mom declined at that time.

-After mom’s triathlon with Aunt Kim on the 20th, McKinley got to stay in Richfield with her Grandma Devenish. They had a great time baking, talking, running errands & having Sedona sleep over.

-Mom was pretty pleased one day when she heard McKinley say the prayer: “…and please bless the food cuz my mom’s the bestest cooker ever…”

-When mom is cuddling with McKinley & mom has her hair in a ponytail (which is 90% of the time), McKinley likes to stick her finger into the rubberband.

-McKinley got a few dollars from Michael for her birthday. She was so excited & said “Look mom! Now we have money so we can be happy!”

-Mom was trying to get McKinley to do something & McKinley was not complying. Mom said “McKinley, I know you can do it – you’re so smart!” McKinley’s reply: “I think I’m running out of smart-ness.”

-When McKinley cries, she gets puffy red eyes & cheeks just like her momma. She hates it & won’t go anywhere until she doesn’t look like she’s been crying. She will say “mom – is my face red?”

IRELAND:

-Ireland has been doing a GREAT job with her potty training! She’s even dry at night! One day, Mom asked her if she needed to go potty & Ireland said “No! I have an owie!”

-Ireland is in a major hand-washing phase right now. Which is good, but she loves to use lots of hand sanitizer. Mom loves her name for it, though: HANItizer. Really…makes it much more simple.

-Ireland is quite funny in public bathrooms. First, she has to check out the potty to see if it’s a “scary potty,” which it usually is until mom convinces her otherwise. Then, after she’s done, she wants to flush the potty – and every other potty in the restroom.

-When we were up at Snowbird for the Potts family staycation, we were at the top where the gondola drops you off. There was only a port-a-potty, so mom went in with Ireland, but she was not going to have anything to do with it. She looked inside the toilet & said “it doesn’t flush very well.”

-It’s so cute after Ireland does something that she’s proud of – like going potty – she runs out & yells “I DID IT!”

-One day, mom walked down the hall & saw Ireland going potty… with a flashlight… trying to see the pee come out. Hmmm…

-It took Ireland a while to realize that McKinley was gone when she was staying at Grandma Devenish’s. She sure missed her, though & prayed at night for her sister to come home.

-For some reason, if you ask Ireland a question, she will automatically say “I don’t know.”

-Ireland loves to go grocery shopping & whenever we go, she wants a little cart. The funny thing is that she loves to push it around, but she won’t let mom put anything in it. She likes it empty.

-Before Ireland puts on her panties, she says “I found the tag!” Mom is trying to teach her to put the tag in the back, but often she’ll put them on sideways.

-Mom has about been pulling her hair out with Ireland lately. She will change her outfit 5 times a day – usually one good outfit, 3 different sets of PJs, and 1 or 2 different swim suits. It’s driving mom crazy with all the messes & laundry!

KEZIA:

-Kezia turned 10 months at the end of this month – and she FINALLY got that first tooth! Now her mouth is working overtime trying to get all those pearly whites to pop through. She’s been pretty good considering all the teething she’s going through.

-Kezia can blow raspberries & her sisters get in on it & she just starts laughing like crazy!

-Kezia’s hair is finally long enough to put in pig tails! They’re so cute when they’re in, but when you take them out, she looks like a little devil because her hair stays sticking up.

-Kezia can now go up the stairs! Mom was downstairs one day & realized Kezia was gone & lo & behold, she had made her way up the stairs with no problem!

-She is full-time into big-girl food. No more baby food for her! She LOVES spaghettios and mac n’ cheese!

-We have to watch Kezia with the toilet water. She thinks it’s fun to splash in!

-Kezia has now entered the obsessive computer stage. Any laptop or keyboard that is around is not safe! She LOVES to pound on that keyboard.

-Kezia is not sure about swings or being thrown in the air. You have to really go slow or she gets these huge, terrified eyes & starts whimpering.

-Kezia has also officially entered the “squealing stealing stage” where if you take something away from her you WILL hear about it! Or… if she sees something she wants, she will squeal to get it.

-Kezia signed milk & fish!

-When mommy’s feeding Kezia, she likes to reach up & put her finger through mom’s little hoop earring… which is fine…until she PULLS!

-Kezia is still pulling up of everything & is starting to let go for a few seconds.


SEPTEMBER NEWSLETTER

McKINLEY:

-After getting the mail one day, McKinley noticed a piece of mail from Disney. Mom told her it was for her (it was just one of those mail-ads about Disney movies) & she opened it & was SO surprised – and excited! She ran around telling everyone that Mickey Mouse sent her mail! She was so excited that she wanted to send him something, so she drew a picture, put it in the business reply envelope & put it in the mailbox. I bet whoever opened it was a bit surprised! About 3 weeks later, there is a fake credit card in the mail with Mickey Mouse on it. McKinley said “oh look! Mickey Mouse sent me something else because he got my letter!”

-McKinley was so sweet on the day that mom found out about Aunt Al. She walked around with her sobbing mom & said “mom. It’s ok. I feel in my heart that I need to stay with you.” And at the viewing, she gave tissues out. It was so sweet when she went across the room to give grandpa some tissues to dry his tears.

-McKinley had a fun 5th birthday! She was awakened with a happy birthday tune from Grandma Potts and her guitar (which was the way Heidi got woken up on HER birthdays growing up!), then she ate her breakfast of choice – ebbelskeevers, and went on a present treasure hunt while we sang Happy Birthday to you. That afternoon, we had homemade pizzas & then made McKinley’s birthday cake using a recipe out of one of her new cookbooks. It turned out yummy! For dinner, we headed to McDonald’s with McKinley’s cousins & had a great time & then it was back home for cake & ice cream & gifts (here’s a short list of gifts she got for her bday: apron, hat & baking cookbooks from mom & dad, camera from Grandma DeeAnn, play guitar from Grandma Potts, a game, some money from her cousin Michael, crafts), & then she let go of 5 balloons for each age. That evening Laralyn & Amylyn came over & gave McKinley a cute princess doll. That night, McKinley got to stay up late while we looked at pictures from the past year & talked about how special & important McKinley is to our family! Happy 5th Birthday McKinley!

-after her birthday, the first thing McKinley would say to anyone is “I’m FIVE!”

-McKinley sang “Whenever I hear the song of a bird..” in sacrament meeting with mom. We practiced quite a bit & it showed! She did terrific – and got lots of compliments! The person who spoke after her song said what a beautiful, brave girl she was.

-Tiarra gave McKinley a pillow pet for her birthday. McKinley was so excited because she’d been asking for one because she’d seen the commercials. After she got it, though, she was disappointed. She came to mom & said “Mom – I didn’t fall in love when I hugged it!” (as the commercials say). Mom had to talk about not believing everything you hear.

-McKinley started preschool the day after her birthday. She gets to do preschool on Monday, Wednesday & Friday and then after preschool on Monday she does dance & on Wednesday she does tumbling. She’s learning a lot!

-Mom heard McKinley yelling outside on the deck & came out to investigate. She came out & said “hey McKinley – what’s all the yelling about?” McKinley said “mom… I’m just trying to yell to Sedona & Camri to say hi!” Mom had to explain that her cousins Sedona (Richfield) & Camri (St. George) live a little too far away to hear her.

-Mom & dad were both a little stressed trying to get out the door to our family pictures. Dad said to mom “you’re killin’ me!” mom said to dad “You’re killing ME!” McKinley said “Hey- you’re both killing each other!” It lightened the situation a bit J

-On the way back from Vernal we had some Laffy Taffys & mom was telling some jokes, like “what did the ____ say to the ____?” Well, McKinley wanted to try her hand & said “Hey mom – what did the cactus say to the cloud?” Mom: “I dunno.” McKinley: “Hey how are you? – ha, ha, ha!” She did this for another 20 minutes or so until we were all “laughed” out J

-McKinley has wanted to help mom crack eggs for a long time & mom kept putting her off. She said that when she turned 5 she could help crack eggs, so on her birthday she got to crack the eggs for her cake. She was pretty excited, and I guess it’s a rite of passage now in our family!

-Ireland was really sad one day & McKinley made a paper for her with her name & a heart. She gave it to Ireland & said “Here. You can keep this for the rest of your life.”

-We were listening to a general conference talk one morning & the speaker said something funny & the congregation laughed. McKinley said “why did they laugh? You’re not supposed to laugh in conference!”

-McKinley walked up to mom one day & held out a sucker & said “MOM! I found this sucker UNDER the couch! Can you believe it?” (thankfully, she had rinsed it off before she started sucking on it, but…. GAG!

IRELAND:

-Ireland had her first day of preschool on September 9th! She was SO excited! She’s been wanting to go to preschool for over a year & has had to watch McKinley go to preschool without her. She’s going to the Little Blue Schoolhouse down the road. She’s in the same class as Joshua & they both love going.

-Ireland is still crazy about putting on 5 different outfits a day. One day was especially funny, though. She’d gotten McKinley’s Hello Kitty’s little shorts & put them on. They were tiny on here, but the funniest part was the hole in the bum where the tail is supposed to go.

-Ireland said she had an owie & went right to grandma’s medicine closet. She ran back with anti-diarrhea medicine & said “here is for my owie! It’s special band-aids!”

-Ireland still asks quite frequently about going to swimming lessons. And she still puts her swim suit on at least once a day!

-Ireland is doing pretty good with her colors, but keeps switching pink & purple.

-Another fetish of Ireland’s has been tights. She wants to wear tights. Every. Day. Multiple. Times.

-We were watching Discovery & they were showing a huge wildfire. Ireland points to the TV & says “look mom – a campfire!”

-Ireland’s little voice is just so cute. When she says “sorry mom!” it’s just impossible to stay mad – even with the messes she makes!

-She likes to bring REAL water into the toy room and “cook” with it.

-Ireland is getting better at drawing people and the letter “I” for “Ireland”

KEZIA:

-Kezia has grown SO MUCH this past month! She is SOCLOSE to walking! She will stand by herself for almost 30 seconds. She’s just waiting to take that first step!

-Kezia is getting better at signing! She can sign: fish, milk, baby, bird & time. She gets SO SO excited when Signing Time comes on! It’s her favorite thing to watch!

-Kezia is a pro at sippy cups now. She loves to drink juice & chocolate milk.

-She likes to play with shoes & pretend to put them on. We’re a bit worried about having another Ireland!

-Kezia can SAY many words! Mama, Dada, Dog, Grandma, Grandpa, Signing Time, Ball, Jesus & uh oh!

-She’s been pointing more & more.

-Kezia continues to have an infatuation with computers & now the dishwasher – any time its open – she’s there!

-She loves to put her fingers in your mouth & especially feed you food. She thinks its hilarious!

-She still loves to blow kisses & wave!

-Kezia can now go up AND down the stairs really well!

-Kezia was sitting on a push toy outside & Ireland pushed her too fast. She fell off & had a bad goose-egg on her head L

-We met with the electro-cardiologist at Primary Children’s at the end of the month. We were hoping he’d find that she’d outgrown the SVT, but according to him, she would have outgrown it by 8 months & he doesn’t think she has. The good news is that we can give her the propranolol 3 times a day instead of every 8 hours – and he has a new medicine we can try that’s only 2x a day.

-Kezia is a squealer! Somehow, we’ll get her to use a big girl voice soon!

-Her teeth just keep coming! Right now she has the 2 bottom ones, 1 top one, & 3 coming in. She’s on the IBProfin!

-Kezia loves her sisters! She loves playing “peek-a-boo” over the banister when she wakes up & she loves Ireland’s squeals of delight when she sees her sister.

-She loves her baths & will splash & stand & pull hair!

-Kezia is officially a MESS-MAKER! She loves to pull down shoes & if a drawer is even slightly open, she will open it & get those clothes out. She also loves to get into the entertainment center & scratch DVDs.

-Kezi loves to hold & look at the picture of Jesus on her changing table.

-Kezia loves to give you five!