The Cutest Blog on the Block

Sunday, June 30, 2013

"Mom close your eyes!"

I did it myself!  It was really easy.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Date Night

Dinner and a 4 Wheeler Ride.

Take two.

There was a new flower in bloom since the last time we had been in the mountain.
I love that the landscape changes throughout the year.
All different colors.
So pretty.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Happy Birthday Fawn!

The boys came running to me to tell me that there was a baby deer in our backyard.
Sure enough.
I have never seen one that small.
Photo opp.
After I took the picture I realized that today was my sweet high school friend's birthday.
Now for the crazy part.
Her name is Fawn.
I told you it was crazy.
So then I started throwing rocks at the little thing.
Just kidding.
It ran away on it's own accord.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

A Business Venture

Porter and Warrick both  found Lego sets that they wanted and decided that one way to get money is recycling metal.
Right then they started a business together as partners.
Metal Collectors Inc.
Over several days they set out on several hunts - searching the countryside.
They needed a business center to store their goods and decided that in front of our house was a good place.
So they piled the rusty junk and beer cans just to the side of our garage.
It was a proud couple of days for me.
They waited for Take a Trip Tuesday. 
And when the time came, they loaded their spoils into the back of the van.
It only took a moment.
Then they proudly showed the worker what they had collected and waited for the grand total of their haul.


They put on their poker faces 
and got in the van.

By the time we went to cash in the receipt, they were able to chuckle a little bit about it.
The cashier even rounded up to $2.25.
They just made 12 cents without doing anything!
We gladly accepted the raise.
She gave each of them an Otter Pop which helped soothe their hearts.
Collecting the money
All's well that ends with an Otter Pop - I've always thought that.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Popsicle Stick Chain Reaction

What can you do with water, a gallon bag, a mopping bucket and three brothers?
You'd be surprised.
Notice Stafford (the little guy).
He was being a guard and taking it very seriously, because it was serious.
I think those black capped soldiers at Buckingham Palace would be proud.

Then "we" (Christian - the big guy) made a Popsicle chain.
While he figured it out
the rest of us watched YouTube videos of chain reactions.
My motto is "Do what you're good at."
Christian is good at figuring things out and we're good at watching YouTube.
Divide and conquer.
Win. Win.

That evening we roasted hot dogs and made banana boats in the canyon with some friends.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Midway. Halfway. Midpoint. Halfpoint.

Saturday marked the half way point for Glenn's MBA.
I can't tell you how excited we all were.
It was a year that seemed hard and not-so-hard all at the same time.
We celebrated at Tucanos and filled our bellies with great food.
Glenn gets a break for 6 weeks!
It is a much needed break.
We've got plans for Aspen Grove, St. George, Cedar City, Boise, and other festivities here and there.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Chalk Potions

We bought plants at the local nursery and planted them - double crossing our fingers on that one.
I have not had a lot of success with gardening like my mother before me and the mother before her.
I'm not sure if my great grandmother was a great gardener, but I assume at some point one of my ancestors had to have been a decent gardener.  
They were pioneers and I know they survived long enough to have children, so they must have been decent.
So in the name of my ancestor that must have been a good gardener, even though I don't know the name, Warrick and I planted tomato and pumpkin plants, some pretty flowers for our pot on our porch and I even transplanted my beloved aloe vera plant to a bigger pot.

The impromptu activity of the day was making "chalk potions".
Tonight we are eating Mini-Murphs. 
And then we're watching a movie.
Christian got back from scout camp and Glenn is finishing up his last weekend of school before a 6 week break.
Should be a good weekend. 

You know you need to check on your kids and their friends in the backyard when...

you hear your 7 year old yell with intensity, "Do you guys want to see a bomb?"

And then the kids answer with cheers and hollers.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Putting on a Show

I looked out the window to see a toy castle siege.
In their toughest voices I heard, "3, 2, 1, FIRE!"

Then I looked behind them and it all made sense.
They had an audience so they were putting on the best show they could.
If you look closely you can see the girls are perched in the wall quietly watching.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Everyday there is an adventure to be had.

Today's adventure started last night when Glenn saw a baby robin trapped under our trampoline.
He hoped none of the kids would see it and that it would find it's way out.
When the kids were jumping on the tramp to get the physical point of the day (see my Morning Must-Do List),
Porter found the little thing.
We called around to find out what you should do when you find a baby bird.
Apparently they are not like cats and if you touch them, their parents won't disown them.
The boys made all sorts of attempts to get him out.
In the center of the picture, it looks like a leaf, but it's not.
Finally they got the baby out and put it in one of my storage bins.
I'm not sure where they got the bin, but I have a feeling there is a pile of stuff sitting somewhere that used to be in the bin.
It kept opening it's mouth so we fed the little bird berries (thanks to an internet tip).
We transferred it to a clear storage bin that could be cleaned easier when it pooped.
We put the bin and bird in the shade and prepared to "Take a Trip" to the splash pad.
We were all in the car and I took my routine trip back to the house to get "one last thing".
I glanced out at the baby bird and saw two adult robins outside the container with worms in their beaks.
They could see the bird, but just couldn't figure out how to get their baby some food.
What great parents!
I fell in love with those robins and forgave them for always chasing away the Blue Jay from our backyard.
I told the boys that the best thing for our little guy was to let him go free and to see if his parents could help him survive.
So that's what we did and then headed for the splash pad in town.

After grilled salmon, quinoa, and salad, we took a bike ride down the canyon.

turkey photo op

Do you remember when we were on our way to the splash pad and I ran back into the house for one last thing?
Well, I'm really wishing it would have been sunscreen
because I came home from yoga class to find Stafford in tears. 
His back and shoulders were bright red.
He had never had a bad burn like this and kept saying it was scratchy.
Remember this plant? We've been through a lot together.
I call it the Giving Tree.
Two weeks ago I faithfully put it on my sunburn
and it was a bad sunburn - you know, slightly purple and blistered?
With this plants magic slime, I DIDN'T EVEN PEEL.
That was amazing to me.
In the past I have used the bottled aloe and really felt it helped,
but this stuff 
is WAY better.
I'm a believer.
Can I get an amen?
Check out these leaves.
This is what I'm hoping will help Porter and Stafford's poor little backs.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Cakes Baked in an Orange

Despite the sand ending up in my house, I still love our sandbox.  It keeps the boys busy for hours.
They created some water system which then turned into a volcano ready to erupt.
I heard the kids say, "It's ready. Go get Mom!"
I'm so glad that my kids still come and get me when they create something they feel is cool.
I'm glad that they still want to impress me with their "stuff".
They held off the volcano explosion until I was present.
I was honored.
When Glenn got home we ate chicken and rice soup and then made cakes that were cooked in tinfoil over hot coals.
My kids ate one bite and opted to just eat cake batter instead.
Update- We tried the oranges again with the youth of our church and it was a success.  The changes that were made were that we used chocolate cake batter and made sure that the cakes were not directly on top of the coals.  They cooked for about 30 minutes and were just right.

Scout Camp

Christian left for scout camp today.
One week.
He is with a group of 12 and 13 year old boys.
He looked so young and little compared to those other boys.
He was bouncy.
 Puppy-like enthusiasm flowed from him.  It was stark next to the "cool" mellow movements of the older boys.
I hope he's okay.
I hope he's not scared.
I hope he's laughing.
I keep forgetting he's gone and keep calling for him.

I know one day he will leave and it will be more permanent,
but that is not this day.
Right now he is still young.
Right now he still lives at home.
Right now he is still teachable and impressionable
and right now is what I'm thankful for.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Father's Day BBQ

I think I'm going to try to watch more home videos.
Last night I had a great experience while
we were watching an old video.  
One of our kids was doing the same things that he does now that makes me a little crazy at times.
But it was so cute to see those traits being displayed by a little guy.  Kind of like when you see a mini version of anything - it instantly becomes cute and adorable.
At that moment I was reminded of how fleeting childhood is.
I missed him being that size and doing that thing.
It seemed so innocent and a part of who he is.
And I became vividly aware that one day I will miss all the little annoyances.
I will miss the things that drive me crazy and as I thought of that video today, 
I found myself accepting these boys for who they are, 
trying to overlook their imperfections and focusing on their strengths.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Glimpses of Everyday Life

Porter and Warrick played all day together today.  (Stafford was happy to tag along)
They made up a solution of Miracle Grow and fed Porter's cabbage plant and then transplanted Warrick's plant to a bigger pot.  Warrick bought the plant with his own money and is quite dedicated to it.

Then they decided they would make a "rabbit run", similar to a dog run, for Theo.
They worked on this for a LONG time.
I suggested that maybe the sides were a bit low.
My concern was noted, but ignored.
Then they hooked it to the cage and tried it out.
Turns out the sides were too low.
Then they spent about two hours trying to get Theo out from under the deck.
Finally they had to call in the big dog (Christian) to get him.

Inspired by the Tropicana Orange Juice bottle,
they decided to try drinking OJ by poking a straw in the orange.

Lunch menu - whatever I can find put on a divided plate.
This day they had ham, yogurt, cheese, strawberries, and raspberries

Another day we had chips and salsa, salad, left-over pasta.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Take a Trip Tuesday

A new way to learn music.
Christian has chords he printed of the internet on the piano,
his chord book next to him,
a post-it note on his guitar with the website he likes that teaches you,
and his ipod in his ears so he can play along with the song he's learning.
Viva la Vida.

The drive to The Pit. 

Monday, June 10, 2013

Make It Monday - Dinner, Beads and a Van

Today I made dinner.
The boys made bead crafts.
Glenn made our van door work (or at least started the process).

I took dinner to a friend that needed a break from making dinner.  
I made Pasta al Forno.  
It is a great meal to take to another family because it has mild flavors and it's easy.
Pair it with garlic bread and a salad and it's a done deal.

The boys made those bead crafts that you iron.
Warrick made a dog to give to my above mentioned friend since her 14 year old dog died recently.
Unfortunately, I ruined it while ironing it.
Note to self: Sometimes skimming the directions isn't good enough.
Stafford made her a parrot, because...?

Our van door has been broken for years.
About 6 years ago, I had it open and decided to pull into our garage.
I hadn't calculated the fact that an open van door increases the width of the vehicle by several inches.
(I've never been good at mental math.)
This van door incident as well as running over our cat, are incidents that my boys like to remind me of often.
They say things like, "Mom remember when you ran over Lightning?"
"Yeah, me too."
"Please pass the salt."
If you want details, ask my kids.  Actually don't because then they will ask me again why I ran her over and why I ran the van into the garage.  
Those are things I can't seem to explain to them.
So as I was saying, the reason I was bringing up the van door is because now that we are running more carpools, we are tired of telling people to go around to the working door.
So after 6 years, it dawned on us that maybe we could get it fixed.
We're smart like that.

Now I'm going to gush a little.
I'm going to tell you some things that I think are amazing about my husband.
He is so good at fixing things!
So good that if anything breaks during the day, the kids say, "Dad will fix it."
They don't even bother with me.
That's okay.
It saves us all some trouble.
He has learned how to wire a house, fix about everything on a car, cut hair, fix wounds - deeps wounds, he has even highlighted my hair with the foil strips.  
Have I ever mentioned he's a good cook too?
Well, he is.
I could go on, but will just mention one more thing.
He's smart, detail oriented, persistent and brave.
And because of these things he is currently fixing our van door.
It is a big job.
He doesn't know how, but he's going to try.
I love that about him!
I'm always amazed that he is willing to jump into projects that he has no prior experience, but figures with YouTube and a little research that he can figure it out.
So Glenn's Make it Monday was making our van door work.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Saturday, June 8, 2013

My Four Sons