30 March 2014

Evelyn at 7 Months

Oh Evelyn. You are so squishy and adorable. In all actuality she is not very chubby or big, she is much taller than Amelia ever was but weighs about the same. Her hair is starting to thicken and grow. Her eyes turned into a bronzed brown color, so pretty. Reminds me of aunt Charity's eye color.

Evelyn absolutely loves to sit up. She is very stable now and can dive onto her tummy if she wants to, she never wants to. Now when I lay her down she chirps at me in irritation, chiding me. The best development this month is that she can find and pop her binky into her mouth at night. I love the sleep suit, that thing is magical. It allows for movement but not so much as to awaken her. Evelyn is my sleepy baby. Never thought I would get one that liked to sleep so much. She sleeps from 9:30 pm-8:00 am. She naps from 9:20-noon, 2:30-4:30, and 7:15-8 pm. Crazy. We hardly go anywhere because when she misses a nap this girl gets grumpy and clingy. I am having a grand time dressing her up in ridiculously cute outfits.

She made the transition to eating solids quite well. After a month she is now eating at every meal with a bedtime snack. She nurses every 4 hours expect at night. Evelyn prefers to suck her food off the spoon. I offer her finger foods, she is slowly learning how to use her gums to mash food. Mostly she only eats rice puffs...and rocks when I let her.

Phillip can get awesome belly laughs out of Evelyn. She loves to get horse back rides from each of her siblings. Justin adores when she pats his bald head and squeals with delight...Phillip loves it too. Evelyn can play pat-a-cake, her arms flap while I sing it and she throws her arms out near the appropriate time. I see clapping skills in her foreseeable future. Her little pointer finger hangs out in the corner of her mouth most of the time. Still no swollen gums or teeth yet. We think she is the pink of perfection. 

Dancing Man

We had another snow storm. Another. Still the coming of spring is inevitable. It will come. The buds on my lilac bush are swelling. The new green grass is poking through the browned blades. The air has a determined scent of green blooming here and there. 

I spent a great amount of time this week taking photos. Monday afternoon I spent a couple hours setting up three vignettes and sewing up another prop (newborn overalls). Evelyn was in a good mood so I took some photos of her for her 7 mth session. I look forward all month for time to take her photos. Makes me feel so happy. I crocheted up a bunny hat during our temple trip last week. She made one cute chubby bunny. Tuesday little Annabelle Rognon came to visit me with her amazing mother, Michelle. She had the cutest ring of peach fuzz around her head. With a little patience Annabelle and I got through all the poses and set ups I had planned out. The boys were equally patient during her session. I think they like it when I have photo sessions because they get to watch TV. Before I put all the stuff away I finished up Evelyn's photos. While I cleaned up my mess the boys painted rocks for fun. Michelle came back on Saturday with her four kids and husband for some sibling photos. Imagine a lot of coaxing, bribing, and waiting! That is how it works. Add in a little photoshop head swaps and Michelle will get a couple perfect photos.

Evelyn is learning how to self-feed right now. I love watching babies master the pincher move and finally land some food into their mouth. In my mind the baby's thought is: this is the best food ever because I purposefully put it there. We went to the park for a picnic on Wednesday. I put Evelyn on the ground for a moment to take a photo of her cute outfit. She immediately stuffed a fist full of dirty rocks into her mouth. The YM/YW invited me to help out with a missionary activity for mutual. The leaders organized a missionary training center for the youth. There were 4 different classes: door approaches, teaching a lesson, language and culture, and p-day. Three Returned Missionaries were assigned a group of 10-12 kids. We rotated with our group and taught the language and culture class. My class learned how to say a prayer in Portuguese and learned about Portugal. It was super fun! While I was digging out some of my mission stuff I found an African outfit I bought in Cape Verde. Everett was delighted to put it on and dance his moves for me. He can act like a little native sometimes. 

Phillip finally snapped the last shred of support on the back fence. He pushed it over with his head. Justin picked up a new post to replace the broken one. Hopefully we can get it fixed so the kids are fenced in again. Phillip thought it was a good idea to make a mud pie on the fence. Phillip brought me some drawings this week. He drew a picture of him holding his hydro bow, the circles above the bow and figure are the symbols on the power disk that goes on the bow. The second drawing is of his monster truck family. Note the shapes he drew for their faces. I feel so proud! Everett constantly only has one shoe or sock missing. His left shoe or sock always seem to mysteriously fall off. I chant the Nursery Rhyme: Diddle diddle dumpling my son Everett. Seems like every family has a kid who loses their shoes and socks. We have one who loses half his shoes and socks. 

Our RS hosted a nice dinner before the Women's broadcast. I ate a delish bowl of Tuscan soup with a salad on the side. Evelyn came with me and distracted me from listening. She decided it was much more fun to screech and sing then take a nap. We sat on the floor and tried to listen (not). 

Evelyn looked like a little ray of spring sunshine this morning in her springy dress. Everett has a nasty cough so we did not stay after sacrament meeting. Everett, Evelyn, and I explored our back alleys for new photo sites. 

23 March 2014

The Full Moon

I worked on sorting clothes and going through the bedrooms this week. There are piles of clothes and boxes in the living room awaiting decisions. Next I need to sort them into consignment, donation, and give away piles. Can't wait to have my spaces back. Deep cleaning often makes a big mess as things come out and then go back away. I am most excited to do the kitchen this week. I hope to get rid of appliances and extra stuff. I like this house diet so far!

I made Miso soup for dinner on Wednesday. It was really yummy, much more complex flavors than you get at a restaurant. Evelyn enjoyed sitting in a box playing with toys. It was the perfect width to support her with a bit of space for toys. I like the box better than our expensive bumbo seat. Evelyn is pretty crabby this week. She might be working on some bottom teeth. Phillip and Everett decided to fill the pretend kitchen sink with water and wash dishes. Thanks guys! Props for creativity. For Webelos this week we worked on Leave no Trace and making sure the boys are on track for their Arrow of Light awards. We only have Craftsman, Outdoorsman, and memorizing Scout stuff. The boys told me they had not earned their Faith in God. I was sort of upset...until I realized (thanks Alison) that the boys only have to do 8 out of 20 requirements of the award. Phew. We have a fun camp out and hike to look forward too.

Wednesday I found Phillip standing on the top of the couch (which faces out of our big window and onto the street) sunning his bum. He told me his bum was itchy and needed some sun on it to get rid of the itch. The problem was Phillip decided to do this at the same time the High School kids were walking home from school. He was dancing and wagging his bum to all the snickers and laughs from the teenagers. I had to compose myself before having a chat with him. I had the same talk with him the day before when he chased Everett around the house with his naked bum. Boys! Not sure what the attraction is to mooning people.

Phillip finally got a play date with his best buddy, Noah. We found out Noah lives only two blocks away on the same cross street! The boys play all morning outside. It was so nice to be outside and playing. There is dirt all over the place from the boys digging in my garden box. Their favorite game was to sit behind Justin's truck gate thing and blast bad guys (Everett). Amelia came to help me with my last Photography class. I arranged for different ages of people to come model for me. In the end they all cancelled except 3 individuals. Amelia came to model as a child. We ended up with a 4 year old boy, Amelia, and two teen girls. Most of my class participants cancelled as well. Spring must be upon us! I will have one make up class this week. My cousin, Alexia Wardell emailed me some tips for posing young ladies. It was very helpful for our class. I really enjoyed teaching these classes.

Friday was a LONG day. I watched 4 extra kids, 3 of them all day. I had duplicates of each of my kid's ages. Needless to say I did not get much else accomplished except making sure everyone was happy, fed, and safe. The boys were so funny. Phillip, Jacob (4), Levi (3), and Everett tried to build a rocket ship with our firewood. They pushed over our back fence, not a difficult feat since it was standing up by sheer will. We walked over to the school park for a while after Amelia came home. I dealt with mastitis at the same time. I had no way to get to a Dr appt, I called Dr Shaw and she sent a prescription to the pharmacy for me. Gotta love that! I do need to see her on Monday, but that was much better then trying to drag 7 kids along. Justin and I got to see Divergent at the theater after the kids went to bed. It was pretty good.

Justin had to work Saturday morning. It snowed most of the day. Phillip went outside off and on all day. He must have made about 7 bowls of snow and kool-aid powder. We went to the library to get out of the house. They library had several new fun toys this time, magnetic texture shapes, cars, and bristle blocks. Phillip made an airplane-car-house for two good guys. I upcycled an old pink sweater into a pair of pants with a bib for Evelyn's 7 mth photos this coming week. I also made a cute newborn skirt and headband for a new baby girl coming this week.

18 March 2014

St Patty's Day

My all-time favorite color is GREEN. I love it. Green congers images of lush grass, vibrant flowers, and gorgeous vistas. It is alive. Any holiday that celebrates green rates pretty high up on my charts! Christmas, St Patricks, Easter, and Halloween! Amelia and Phillip spent a long while thinking and planning their leprechaun trap. Amelia covered a box with green paper and decorated it with marker, glitter, and spangles. I cut a door for them in the box. Amelia's idea was to use something sticky to trap the leprechauns. She eventually decided to fill a daffodil cup with honey and stick money down in the honey. We made one trap for Amelia and one for Phillip. The kids carefully placed the traps inside the box then made a trail with licorice and pennies. All the kids helped me make treats for Phillip's preschool class. We filled glassine bags with 6 rolos and rainbow licorice. I thought the treats turned out cute.

I went to bed way too late. I finally got around to appliquing a shamrock onto a shirt I bought last month for Phillip. Then the leprechauns wreaked havoc in our living room. One leprechaun almost got caught in the honey. He had to leave a dime behind stuck in honey. I think that made it mad because they hung Cager and Monkey Pack from the ceiling fan, covered our temple photo, turned our family photo upside down, put shoes on the piano, made a licorice arrow, turned the couch cushions upside down, made shamrocks out of pears, turned our milk green, and turned the potty water green. Phillip flushed the water 6 times before it turned clear again. I loved the kid's reactions! We had green shamrock pancakes for breakfast.

Before Amelia came home I read an article on how holidays are becoming outrageous and elaborate. I blushed! Kids expect Christmas like experience at each and every holiday. Schools are partially to blame because they go all out with each little holiday. Parents are supposed to pick up the line and make a celebration at home too. This article kicked my pants today! Amelia came home and started to cry because she did not get anything fun at school for St Patrick's day (except for sorting stupid Lucky Charms). She wanted treats, gifts, and something more than just wearing green. Even the reminder of how much fun we had before school was not enough. Lame. Totally lame. I made corned beef and veggies for dinner with a loaf of soda bread. It was divine! Justin even said that the meal is  appetizing to him after 9 years.