Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Cort: Carter and I are asking some girls something today and you have to look really good to do that.
Mom: What are you asking them? (trying soooo hard to suppress laughter!)
Cort: (shyly) I’m not telling.
Later Cort disappears to gel his hair and comes back carrying my bottle of mouthwash.
Cort: Can you open the mouthwash for me? I want to look really good. Really good. (pause) Today’s just a special day and there’s no reason.
I thought I would split in two I was trying so hard not to die laughing and keep a straight face. You can bet I was aching for him to get home from school so I could ask how things went and what, exactly, he and Carter were up to. Come to find out Cort was telling one of his classmates that she was pretty and Carter was having Cort be the go-between to ask another girl if she’d be his girlfriend. I’m sure glad Cort had the new shoes, hair gel, mouthwash combo going for him on such a BIG DAY!!
Thursday, December 13, 2007
This must be some kind of record! Somehow we were able to get a picture of each of our five kids on Santa's lap and all of them were smiling. I doubt Jake and Emmy will be so eager next year! I guess I have to admit that I just LOVE the 2nd Christmas picture with Santa. The first year they are always too young to resist very much but by their second time around they are downright hilarious--screaming and clawing and scrambling for their parents. I love it. Anyway, here are the traditional photos (thanks to the ward party, we avoided a painful trip to the mall or wherever else it is you can go these days to sit on Santa's lap and have your picture taken!). Enjoy!
Wednesday, December 5, 2007
PAINTING MACY'S ROOM...WE PAINTED IT LAVENDER WHEN WE MOVED IN LAST SUMMER AND NOW I FINALLY GOT AROUND TO ADDING THE SEMI-GLOSS STRIPES THAT WERE PART OF MY ORIGINAL PLAN. I LOVE HOW IT TURNED OUT AND AM TRYING TO TALK MACY INTO SWITCHING ME ROOMS STRAIGHT ACROSS! :)
COUNTING OUR BLESSINGS LEADING UP TO THANKSGIVING. THE KIDS HAD SO MUCH FUN ADDING THEIR OWN TO THE WALL. I THINK CORT HAD BYU OR SOME DERIVATIVE OF BYU UP THERE SEVERAL TIMES. THIS IS SOMETHING WE'VE DONE BEFORE AND WILL DEFINITELY TRY TO DO EVERY YEAR.
DROWNING IN BABY GEAR! IMAGINE TWO HIGH CHAIRS, TWO EXER-SAUCERS, TWO BOPPY PILLOWS, TWO BOUNCY SEATS, TWO INFANT CAR SEATS AND OODLES OF STROLLERS OF ALL SIZES AND CONFIGURATIONS.
LAUGHING AT CALEB. HONESTLY, THIS PICTURE PROBABLY NEEDS NO CAPTION. WHAT BETTER ENSEMBLE COULD BE THROWN TOGETHER THAN HIGH HEELS, COWBOY ATTIRE AND NO PANTS? HOT STUFF.
COLLECTING LOTS OF NOTES AND ARTWORK FROM SWEET CORT. THIS ONE IS A FAVORITE AND A CORT ORIGINAL (ie. no help from mom or dad writing it or coming up with the phrasing). I LOVE HOW HE TELLS ME IT'S "BEN NICE" HAVING ME IN OUR HOME. HILARIOUS AND SO ENDEARING.
MOVIE NIGHTS!! WE'VE BEEN WATCHING THE CLASSIC CHRISTMAS SHOWS THAT WE BOUGHT ON DVD YEARS AGO (RUDOLPH THE RED NOSED REINDEER, FROSTY THE SNOWMAN, SANTA CLAUS IS COMING TO TOWN, ETC.). THE KIDS ARE LOVING IT.
SITTING UP AND SOOOOO PROUD! THE TWINS ARE MUCH HAPPIER NOW THAT THEY CAN SEE WHAT'S GOING ON MORE EASILY. THEY LOVE TO SIT ON A BLANKET FACING EACH OTHER AND FIGHT OVER TOYS SET DOWN INBETWEEN THEM. IT IS HILARIOUS TO WATCH THE FIRST OF THESE BOUTS OF SIBLING RIVALRY START UP. THEY ARE VERY AWARE OF EACH OTHER AND IT'S FUN TO WATCH THEM START TO INTERACT (AND SQUABBLE OVER RATTLES!).
We are doing well! Hope everyone is enjoying the holiday season!
Sunday, December 2, 2007
Just thought I'd share a small sampling of the gems Cort has shared with me this week. I swear, the kid is hilarious.
1. As we were bustling about getting ready one morning I told the kids to hurry and get their jobs done because Grandpa and Grandma Mason were coming over. Cort paused and looked at me and then asked incredulously, "Are you sure Grandpa's coming over? He's kind of a lazy dude." (that was one I particularly enjoyed sharing with my Dad!)
2. I called over to Cort's friend's house to check in on him and make sure that he wasn't getting too hungry (since the lunch hour was approaching). Cort came to the phone and I asked him what they were doing. In a dramatic voice he whined, "Jonah's playing the computer and I'm just sitting here watching him!" I suggested that maybe he should come home for lunch and take a break and then maybe they could get back together later in the afternoon. But, no, Cort insisted he wanted to stay. I said, "Well Cort, I don't want you just sitting over there watching Jonah play computer." To which he replied, exasperated: "I would go and do something else but I'm stuck here on the phone!!" Good point.
3. And then, the best for last. Today in Fast and Testimony Meeting our whispered conversation went something like this:
Cort: Are you going to bear your testimony?
Molly: No, not today.
Cort: Why not?
Molly: I just don't really feel like it today, Cort.
Ten minutes later
Cort: Are you going to bear your testimony?
Molly: No, not today.
Cort: Why? Why not?
Molly: The spirit tells you in your heart if you should bear your testimony and that's how you know if you should.
Cort: The spirit is telling me to tell you to bear your testimony!
I got quite a chuckle out of that and was mercifully saved from being commanded via Cort to share my testimony as Elder Nelson stood to bear his testimony and close the meeting. I think he did a better job than I would've done anyway! :)
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
The perfect caption for this pictures is THIS could happen to you! TWINS! Our good friends from our Muncie, Indiana days, the Torries, stopped by this past week for a quick visit. The Torries paved the way into the wonderful world of multiple births and had boy/girl twins just a few weeks after we moved away. Their twins, Brooklyn and Colby, are standing at the very back of this pack of children and are just days younger than Caleb...2 years old now. We hadn't seen their kiddos for quite a while so it was especially fun now that we have a set of boy/girl twins of our own to let the kids run around wild while we caught up and exchanged experiences on the rigors of raising lots of little people simultaneously. Between the two couples we had 9 children under the age of 7 scampering around our basement (one of the Torrie's boys was asleep upstairs on our couch and didn't make the photo). Good times! Thanks for coming to see us Torries!
On another note: You know when you have a conversation with someone that you know they probably don't remember at all, but for some reason what was said really sticks with you? Well, I had one of those conversations almost exactly 6 months ago with my brother-in-law John. The babies were tiny tiny and John was in town for their blessing day, seeing them for the first time. The baby of John's own family had relatively recently turned one and talking about that darling little boy I said to John something along the lines of: "I bet seeing these tiny babies makes you SO glad that you have all of this behind you. Don't you love knowing you never have to go back through some of these stages again?" I guess I was expecting him to say yes and go on and on about how great it was to have certain baby stages and challenges behind you "forever" but his answer has stuck with me for a long time. Instead of what I expected he commented that: No, it was actually kind for sad to him to think that he wouldn't experience those things again. He acknowledged that it was fun to watch their kids grow but that he loved every little stage and accomplishment.
Fortunately, or unfortunately (not sure which) my personality is such that I tend to relish checking things off, getting things done and going going going as fast and as hard as I can (even when I shouldn't...Spencer reminds me of this frequently). I worry that sometimes I may not enjoy NOW for what it is, instead of working and looking forward excessively. That conversation with John stuck with me and thanks to his advice, I have tried to enjoy "every little stage" of the twins lives to date and can't believe how fast they have grown and changed. It makes me teary just thinking about it. These pictures show how they've grown up in just 6 1/2 short months--it is unbelievable. Thanks John, for lots of things, but particularly for helping me appreciate every day.
Friday, November 16, 2007
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
This month Jake has really been rolling around like a maniac. He will go and go until he hits a solid surface and then wails to be rescued. Emmy, on the other hand, has decided that rolling is altogether WAY overrated, and we can’t get her to budge off of her back or stomach, depending on how she’s set down on the floor! I’m sure it will come in time when she is duly motivated by watching her brother crawling around the room! Neither baby is sitting up unassisted yet but both are getting close. It will be nice to have them be able to sit up and see us without the assistance of so much gear. And the thought of them crawling? Dreamy! Maybe by Christmas…
Both babies love toys to play with and like to taste everything they touch. Jake can be particularly aggressive in this regard and has, on countless occasions, attempted to prove once again that neither Emmy nor her clothing are edible. When I set them down on the floor in close proximity to each other I often hear, “Mom! Jake’s attacking Emmy!” which is a fairly accurate description of Jake’s attempts to either roll up over the top of his sister or pull some part of her face or body off for a taste test! It is pretty darn cute (if you’re not Emmy, I guess!).
Speaking of food, the babies are well into solid foods now and loving their cereal or fruit and vegetable meals following nursing. Emmy finally got the hang of the spoon and Jake’s been a champ from the get-go. I feed them simultaneously (bite for one, bite for the other), and Jake often grunts with displeasure when he has to wait his turn while I’m giving Emmy a spoonful. What can I say, the boy loves to eat!
The exact DAY that the babies turned six-months old, the woman next to me in church commented about Emmy’s darling teeth. TEETH??? I had no idea. A closer inspection ruled that yes, Emmy indeed is cutting her two bottom teeth simultaneously and Jake has two poking through on the bottom as well. Man! The things you miss when you’re distracted by three other needy kiddos! Thanks to the aforementioned teeth, I slept for 3 hours last night and spent most of my time pacing the upstairs with a poor, suffering Emmy. Ugh. But, I’m sure they will be cute once they break through all the way!
Thursday, November 1, 2007
There isn't a picture of Caleb because he has an issue with being photographed (remember the Lake Mead post?!?!). Anyway, he was a puppy dog and a super cute one, at that!
Sunday, October 28, 2007
This week has been a memorable one for us! Wednesday through Saturday, Spencer, Cort and Macy were in Anaheim, California for the kids' very first trip to Disneyland! Although the timing for Disneyland wasn't the best for our family this year (again, remember that three of our kids are under 2 years old...yikes) Spencer's family had planned a reunion, of sorts, and how could we miss the chance for our oldest two kids to have that kind of an experience with cousins?! So...early Wednesday morning, Spencer, Cort and Macy sped away in the always sleek, speedy and reliable red Honda Civic (Spencer would add: "chick magnet" to this list of descriptors, presumably becauses he drives this pathetic piece of metal and is trying to feel better about it)to make the drive while Caleb and twins and I "took one for the team" and stayed here at home to tend to the home and hearth.
As a side note, I definitely drew the short straw on this one folks, and I plan to hold this over Spencer's head for years and years to come. He owes me BIG TIME! haha Of course I'm kidding. But anyway, as much fun as it was to care for three babies for four days with no help or back up during the day or night (sarcasm, sarcasm), I don't think it held a candle to the magic of watching your kids experience Disneyland for the very first time. I was just plain super bummed not to be able to be there. Maybe next time...
Special thanks to Spencer's parents for planning and making possible such an incredible memory for our kids and their cousins! They will be talking about this for YEARS to come. We love you Grandpa and Grandma Richards!
A direct quote from Cort captures his sentiments about the trip--after reading the Disneyland slogan "Where Dreams Come True" he turned to Spencer and said, "Dad, my dreams really DID come true! I never knew it could be this great!" So, so cute. Here are a few pictures of their trip...Cort's all time favorite thing was getting chosen at the Jedi Training Academy to fight the "real" Darth Vader. You can see from his face how seriously he took this! Apparently, no smiling is allowed when you are fighting Darth.
He keeps telling me, "Mom, a Jedi uses the force for knowledge and defense, never for attack." which is a direct quote from the bottom of the Jedi certificate they gave him at the end of his training. Hilarious.
Macy of course loved the princesses but has talked most about Splash Mountain. "Mom, we got SOAKED!"
And, yes, Caleb the twins and I survived our four days alone together and Spencer treated me to a delicious hour and half nap this afternoon so all is well and forgiven. :) Now...we are looking forward to Halloween!
Friday, October 26, 2007
Since this post is about mothers, I had to include a somewhat recent photo of my own Mom. Honestly, isn't she one hot mama?? Okay, on with the blog...
This week I enjoyed a way-too-rare girls night out with my mom, sister Jocee, cousin Katie and aunt Peg. We met at the Dodo (where else, for a GNO??) in Gateway and laughed and laughed and laughed over smoked turkey sandwiches and warm barbeque dipping sauce. It was pure heaven. The conversation was so entertaining and it felt so good to smile after a really rough day at home with the crew. It was extremely therapeutic and I'm already scheming as to how I can get this group together again next month for another night on the town.
Among several of the things we talked and laughed about was how each of us so desparately needs and wants a "Mom!" Now, of course we have one but the ones we have are no longer willing or able to do what we want and/or really need! Now, as full grown adults and mothers ourselves, we desparately need and want and, dare I say ACHE for, the mother of our infancy and childhood. You know the mother of whom I speak. She's the one who races around preparing meals to our liking and worrying that we've had enough to be completely happy and satisfied. The one who pulls the blinds, fluffs the pillow, and searches out the softest, warmest blanket before tucking us in and then being on guard for the duration of our nap to ensure that no one makes a peep to disturb our rest. The one mother who cleans up after us when we're done with whatever it was that was entertaining us, does our hair over and over until it's perfect, racks her brain thinking of what she could do for us that would be fun for a particular holiday or upcoming event. In short, the mother who is consumed with US, with OUR needs. Come on, this would be the LIFE! Each one of us at dinner that night is a mom, albeit in different stages of the adventure. But with all of our varying life experiences and challenges we could all agree...what we each want for Christmas is definitely a MOTHER! :)
Sunday, October 21, 2007
My brother-in-law John works for Google and probably knows about a lot more cool things Google Reader can do. Any tips to share John?? :)
Friday, October 12, 2007
“Women who have two children closely born will regularly tell
Our fellow parents with children born within a narrow, yet non-twin, span of time may have only half the difficulty during any single newborn developmental challenge, but their healing refractory window is almost entirely absent. The duration of each stage goes on twice as long. Stair-step families are the cross-country marathoners of parenting.
What of those families who have a singleton and then twins? Or twins, then a singleton? (MOLLY'S COMMENTARY: Or, heaven forbid, 3 stair-step children and THEN twins?!?!) You are the decathletes of parenting! Lend your empathy to all new parents you can. Your perspective should be universally respected.”
Sunday, September 30, 2007
The title of this blog includes the word "spectacle" because that is the only word I can think of to describe us as we were out and about this trip. I swear, we were turning heads everywhere we went. My mom complained that we could never really get anywhere on our nightly walks on the boardwalk because we got stopped every 3 feet by someone googling over the babies (Spencer is still half convinced it was actually him there were googling over) and then gasping as they realized that all of the little people trailing us belonged to our family. It was hilarious. Here's a shot of us on one of those BEAUTIFUL boardwalk strolls....
And the BEACH!! Here are just a few shots of the fun the kiddos had playing in the sand and water...I swear, little kids are born for this kind of thing! They jumped over waves, chased and fed the birds endlessly, buried Cort in the sand, built all kinds of sand castles, and Cort and Caleb even boogie boarded on Spencer's back. How any of them dared get in the water without wetsuits is still a mystery to me. Brrrr!! What a great week!
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
1. The way Jake and Emmy hold hands while they are nursing. Sure, it's just because babies grab onto anything and everything when they are small and they just happen to be in very close proximity to each other while dining. But still, it is absolutely adorable and they've done it since the day they were born. Ohhhh...I just LOVE it.
2. That Caleb (who just turned 2 in July) is doing AWESOME on his potty training. Okay, better said, he is potty trained! On just the second day of training he did his "little pushes" (#1, for those of you who are unfamiliar with our potty training lingo!) every time all day and his "big pushes" (a.k.a. #2) once on the potty. No accidents. Since then he has had a handful of accidents but hasn't been in diapers at all (except for at night) and has even told me he needed to go and used the potty while we were out running errands. Way to go Caleb! Yahoo! Now...down to just TWO in diapers. Beats THREE!
Things I don't like...
1. When Spencer is moonlighting and doesn't get home until late (2-3 nights a week), I obviously run around like a crazy person trying to put the kiddos to bed alone. Once I get everyone bathed and brushed and in jammies, I usually send Macy to wait for me in her bed while I tuck Cort and Caleb in in the basement. Inevitably, no matter how quickly I try to go, she falls asleep before I can get there. It breaks my heart every time and I wish I could kiss her and say prayers together and tell her how much I love her and what a wonderful daugther and friend and helper she is to me. I miss those chances to sit on the edge of her bed and talk, just the two of us, for a moment. Sometimes I am spread too thin and miss important things. It makes me sad just writing about it....
2. The way I often have to expect/demand Cort, my oldest who's five, to act twice his age just because having one more person demanding my constant attention would put me under. Sorry Cort. Thanks for so being patient with me and such a mature little guy. You're an amazing big brother to all the little people who follow you in our family. We and they are lucky to have you and I definitely am NOT trying to make you grow up any faster. I'll always want you to be my little guy.
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Macy, Caleb and the twins watching "Wonder Pets" on Saturday morning. The best thing about twins is you never have to share the baby!
Me and Cort outside our home on his first day of kindergarten. What a handsome little man!
This is a shot of Jake rolling for the first time earlier this month. Emmy couldn't be shown up by her big brother and also rolled over for the first time later that same day. One of their first "firsts" and they did it together! So cute!
I don't know who is happier about Cort riding the bus to AND from school this year...me or him? Tough call.
Caleb got soooooo mad every time I tried to take his picture on this trip. I don't know why, but the devilish side of me couldn't resist chasing him around the boat teasing: "Say cheese Caleb! Say cheese!" . Hence the above video clip.... He was NOT amused.
We took the twins with us to the Richards cabin up near Oakley for the first time over Labor Day. We only ended up staying overnight because Cort was sicker than a dog and we had to get back to do some home improvement projects, but we had a pretty good time. The mountains are so gorgeous in September. We've got to get back up there soon...
Thursday, September 6, 2007
Regardless, Molly's answers to this burning question are pretty much what I'd say, except she missed the one about doing it to please your spouse and perhaps score some favors (a little golf time, one night a week out playing hoops, quality spousal recommitment, renewal and refill the tank time, etc). For the most part though, it's because we love what we do. We love our kids so much. Molly has been known to say how much she loves motherhood, and I couldn't be more grateful for that. I love fatherhood. I love nothing more than being with my family, playing with my kids, holding our babies. I am incredible blessed with a wonderful family, and fortunately, one that takes a lot of work and responsibility and effort and time and sweat and tears and pain and struggle because those things make me appreciate and love my family even more. One of my favorite things to do each night is to go into the kids' rooms after they're asleep and lay my head on their pillow, feel their soft cheeks on mine, and tell them I love them. I get tingles on my arms every time I do that. They are so special!
Our lives our never dull. This week has been as crazy as ever. Yesterday our neighbor's house got hit by lightening and suffered major fire damage. We grieved for them and their loss, and we were reminded how fragile and freakish life can be. We are grateful for our home, even though I've seen more of it lately than I'd care with painting pretty much the whole upstairs and now finishing a basement room (anyone want to help me tape and putty dry wall this weekend?). Cort was sick over the weekend and now Caleb has croup. I've spent a little more than my fair share of time dropping the kids off at the pool. For those of you who took that last sentence literally, let's just say I have become well acquainted with King John; I now have white porcelain tattoos on my backside; I've been doing a little plumbing lately; I . . . am probably going to get in trouble for these references by my significant other so I'll stop there. And in case there are any readers who still don't know what I'm talking about, give up.
The highlight of our weekend was the BYU game. Well, it was one of the highlights. We also spent a really nice evening at our family's cabin. The mountains were so beautiful and the clean, crisp evening air really made me excited for fall. We're looking forward to our first real family vacation in quite a while in a few weeks when we head down to San Diego. Right about now I could stand to sit on the beach and veg. Or, more accurately stated, I could stand to run along the beach and into the water chasing kids and trying to prevent drowning and digging myself out from under the bury-Dad-in-the-sand hill.
Well, I've got to run. I have now fulfilled Molly's request to update the blog, and in reference to an above comment, hopefully this kind act on my part will translate into some special favors later on.
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
Sunday, August 12, 2007
For the past few months, getting our two-year-old Caleb to take a nap has become more difficult. His little body still desperately needs the daytime rest but, for whatever reason, he has gotten infinitely harder to put down and often he will come up the stairs bawling hysterically only 45 minutes to an hour after I've put him to sleep. Any mother knows this is one of the most frustrating aspects of parenting---sleepy, grouchy children that won't sleep when you offer them a warm, cozy, darkened room and an open invitation to nap! Are they completely nuts?! I fantasize about opportunities like that. I digress. So anyway, I've tried a number of tricks to get him to sleep all of which have worked but for limited lengths of time. Our most recent tactic is a throwback technique used by my parents in the early '80's--oh yes, the threatened visit of the terribly scary, always mysterious gypsies (in our house pronounced "jippie-ohs"--who in the world knows why). Speaking of permanantly damaging little children through our parenting styles, I'd like to know if anyone can quantify the damage done to little Caleb as we tuck him into bed saying "Hurry hide! The gypsies are coming! I can hear the bells on their wagons. They'll take you far, far away and make you do all their work and teach you to be a pickpocket if they find you! Quick! Hide! Don't get out of your bed or they'll take you away." This technique is multi-functional. It not only puts Caleb down for a nap but it also gets him to bed faster than a speeding bullet at night, coaxes him to eat his food when nothing else will, and basically solicits obedience in any number of situations. If I reach for my cell phone when he's being a turkey and tell him I'm going to call the "jippie-ohs" to come get him, I can get him to do whatever I want. I like to think that deep down he knows that we aren't really serious and that he is always perfectly safe in our home and under our care. Maybe I'm wrong and the repurcussions of all this will come out in one of Caleb's counseling sessions years down the road. But either way, for now, where the rubber meets the road I have no other choice but to endorse on occasion: THE SCARE TACTIC. Hopefully harmless....definitely effective. Anyone else have any true confessions?? :)
Thursday, August 9, 2007
On a more serious note, I'm sitting in the Layton Instacare right now working (typing a few words in between seeing patients) and I want to get a few thoughts out there to the general public. First of all, if your nose is runny, it's not an emergency. Wipe gingerly from left-to-right, take an aspirin, and call your regular doctor in the morning. Or better yet, suffer through your cold like the rest of us and guess what? Within a week or so you'll feel all better.
Second, if you find your infant child face down in the bathtub and you have to resuscitate him with mouth-to-mouth, don't come to the Instacare several hours later. Go to the ER immediately. Don't even wait around to kick your own hinie for being the idiot that left that infant long enough to get in that predicament. The hinie kicking will come later, after the child is found to be OK, by a loving spouse or friend from the child protection agency.
Third, if you're hooked on narcotics and need a fix, don't come in to the same Instacare you've already been three times in the last week. Chances are, we'll have a record of those visits and know you've already gotten more than your fair share of fix.
Finally, if you're dealing with a medical issue that has been going on for SEVERAL MONTHS and is NOT getting acutely worse TONIGHT, don't come to an Instacare. Chances are if you've waited this long, you can wait a little longer to get in to your regular doctor who knows and loves you and can better deal with your long-standing problem.
Wow, wasn't that an upbeat post? Of course the above is filled with a little sarcasm, but truthfully, I really do love what I do, and I'm happy to help, even if you just have a little cold. I have been very blessed with a profession in which I can serve others. I love it!
And don't forget not to reply to Molly's post.