21 March 2017

Potty Trained Princess, St Patrick's, and a Day Hike

The huge news of the week is that Evelyn pretty much potty trained herself. As mentioned last week she is intent on getting a Power Wheels of some sort. In her little mind I somehow equated wearing undies and being a big girl with earning such a toy. I told her I might consider one for her birthday in August, now everyday is her birthday. We ran out of pull ups Monday night (I still had a box in the garage for nighttime). She woke up Tuesday to find the pull ups were gone and a nice pair of Cinderella undies to wear. She took the idea in stride and basically spent the rest of the week listening to her body and taking herself to the bathroom. She still does not enjoy bowel movements so had a couple cold baths after pooping her undies. She also had two wet accidents while we were out and about running errands. After the mess of training two boys I was secretly grateful that she transitioned much better and much cleaner. We certainly tried enough times to train her, it came down to her being ready and the chance coming up at an opportune time. We are so proud of her! I did try to find a small used ATV type battery powered ride with a 6v battery, no luck. Today she stuffed dollars found around the house into a purse, dressed herself, then declared herself ready to go her toy from Walmart. I told her mommy did not have enough dollars. Jen happened to come over. She offered to make Jen a turkey sandwich with mayo and mustart and cheese. After Jen took the first bite Evelyn demanded a dollar for her services. Oh this girl!

Our Monday nights are even crazier now with soccer starting. Phillip had his first practice at 5:30 on Monday. He was quite excited to bust through homework so he could get his soccer clothes on and ready for his first day of practice. The new drill is take Mia to piano, wait, drop off Phillip to soccer, drop of Mia to ballet, pick up Phillip, then pick up Mia. Justin helped ferry kids to and fro after dinner. The kids were all pretty tired due to Post-Traumatic-Daylight-Savings-Syndrome. It really should be classified as a syndrome. Josie slept with her little foot poking through the crib rails. No matter how many times that happens, it the the sweetest sight of all. A baby sleeping in a strange position. Amelia softly covered her mouth with her hands to stifle a cute giggle, her first time witnessing her sister sleeping with her foot in a silly place.

For the interim Tuesday will be our FHE night. Monday is simply too crazy. We tried to plan on Sunday night but that also got too crazy with getting kids to bed early for school. Justin taught a lesson on the Articles of Faith. We memorized the 10th and 12th Articles of Faith as a family by singing the Primary music. Amelia only needed to solidify those last two A of F to pass off her goal for Activity Day Girls. We had a dance party, one of our most requested activities for FHE. It is fun to dance silly with the curtains closed with our crazy kids. Even Josie is dancing with her shoulder shrugs and hip waggling moves.

Jen found a perfect hutch for the dining room, that wall needed something big to make a statement. The hutch somehow matches the table to the last stroke, color, accent color, and design. Must be from the same line of furniture at the local store. She helped me load it after the kids went to bed. I enjoyed watching the kids slowly notice the huge new statement item in the room. Phillip did not even notice it until after school. Everett noticed it right away, he tucked his favorite monkey into a drawer, Evelyn soon had the other drawer stuffed full of sparkly shoes. I cleaned up the new piece and decorated it with a plethora of chickens. The hutch provides just enough space to take pressure off the overloaded pantry. Phillip wanted to look his best for class photos at school. His idea of handsome was a Darth Vader shirt, black running pants, white socks, tennies, and a mohawk. He was quite determined about the hairstyle. He came home so proud that he only touched his hair "a little bit all day."

Everett joined 75 other 6 and under kids for their first day of soccer practice. That many small, energized kids made for quite the spectacle. Only 3 parents signed up to be coaches, meaning 25 kids per team. Hoping some other parents volunteer, I tried to convince Justin it would be fun to coach soccer. He said no, hands down NO. Some other coaches from the other age groups showed up to help organize the first day. Soon the kids were busy rotating through 6 practice skill areas with about 10 kids per station. I packed a picnic dinner of tuna sandwiches, oranges, bananas, carrots, and water for the other kids to snack on. Amelia followed Everett around with my old point-and-shoot camera taking photos like a champ. Outside was super-duper windy. The little girls had huge nose slugs before too long with the wind and temperature dropping. We all enjoyed the outside family time. Justin nabbed Evelyn for a Walmart trip for dog food once her nose started running something fierce. She looked amazing wearing a ninja turtle tutu shirt, cape, and pink boots. That girl! I noticed Everett crying a couple times when he missed nabbing the ball or making the right moves. Once he even collapsed on the grass in tears when he did not win a basic scrimmage. Some teamwork might do our Man-Diva some good. That night the Leprechaun paid us a visit even though the kids did not have time to make a trap. Mostly he just made a silly mess and turned the milk green. The best part was the message he left over the couch on the new hanging door thing. Check out the photo above.

I adore St Patrick's Day. I adore green so a holiday centered on wearing green is right up my alley. I've gained weight since Josie came, started on a new anti-depressant and on synthroid. The three combined have not favored a skinner me or helped me even want to get out and do something about it. I was sad my litany of green shirts did not fit me so comfortably. I finally wore a green Sunday shirt normally reserved for the summer. It was a warmish day so totally worked out. The little girls totally rocked their cute green dresses. The girls and I spent a much needed afternoon at the park. We arrived to find 6-7 other family's with the same idea. Evelyn had plenty of playmates this time. First off I pushed the girls for our normal 20-30 minutes on the swings. Evelyn insists I push her with both hands on her back with an occasional underdog. That kid can be a bossy cow...but then I find her giggling with Josie as she helps her down the slide. We took another 20 minutes to feed the geese some bread. One goose had quite the attitude. It hissed at Evelyn as it impatiently waited for a hunk of bread. What did Evelyn do? That girl hissed right back and charged the goose. It quickly retreated to the water and flew away. I got to chat with the homeschool mothers while their kids entertained my toddler.

Amelia and I went on a special date to watch the live action Beauty and the Beast. We first had some dinner at Oya, Amelia's choice. Her teacher, Mrs Roach was having dinner across the restaurant! We enjoyed a short chat with her before she left. Amelia chattered on and on about school, her friends, and design ideas for dresses. She recently busted out the design books I got her a couple years ago. She spent the weekend designing holiday inspired dresses. My favorites were a cute ladybug dress and of course the St Pat's dress. We walked main street to burn some time before the movie started. There is something just magnificent about holding your daughter's hand, walking along, soaking in her grins and chatter. We loaded up on popcorn, drinks, and Reese's cups for the movie. We saw quite a few of her friends also in attendance. Good gracious, the movie was so, so amazing. I loved the songs added to the live-action used from the Broadway version. Disney outperformed once again! Since then Amelia and I break into random snatches of songs from the movie. We got the music so are also hearing the music around the house from time to time.

We needed to get out of dodge for the day. The weather was perfect! Perfect Spring temperatures with just a touch of cooling breeze. We opted to "hike" around Scottsbluff...not sure it qualifies as a hike since the rim is all paved smooth. The hike is a no-brainer for us: stroller friendly and short. Justin treated us to sandwiches at Jimmy Johns. We drove to the bluffs right after. I nabbed two cute pioneer bonnets for Josie and Evelyn. I've tried to make the bonnets 4-5 times but never get them just right. The bonnets were only $8.50 per so had Justin get them. The littles looked so sweet with their shaded faces and happy bonnets. Amelia was quite the mother hen, clucking around the boys shouting at them to get away from the edges and to be careful. She made my job easier. Phillip had to sit in time-out for not listening to Justin and putting himself in danger. The boys found a "work-table" where they immediately started to pound rocks to dust with harder, bigger rocks. Soon billows of rock dust filled the air over their heads. They stayed up at that particular spot for quite some time. The views from the bluffs are so wide and magnificent. We could see clear to the WY mountains and way past Chimney Rock. Hooray for day trips and family time. Justin took off on a late evening motorcycle ride. The kids all got a short ride once he came back. Evelyn enjoyed her first ever motorcycle ride! She is still talking about how awesome her 3 times around the block were. She went sooooooooooooooooo fast. Josie discovered the sidewalk chalk, course she gummed on it a bit, I was surprised to find her actually drawing with the chalk. She focused long enough on her task to completely color over a heart I drew for her.

Sunday's lesson for the YM/YW Sunday School was something special. We watched the special witness testimony of Elder Holland on the Book of Mormon. The challenge was to record your own testimony of the Book of Mormon and somehow share it publicly. Most of the class refused to upfront. So instead we split up into groups of two, the kids were to prepare their testimony on the Book of Mormon with scripture, history, and/or experiences of how they knew the Book was true. I participated in the challenge. video recording my testimony was one of the more "embarrassing" experiences of my life! I even served as a missionary! As the lesson time came to a close the spirit inspired me to related the teens to how the Apostles, missionaries, and prophets must feel as Conference approaches. What would they say and testify about if s/he were asked to testify of Christ. The spirit was so strong, made me feel so humble and ready to try again. Something about the pressure of bearing recorded testimony knowing it could be shared was humbling. Try it!

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