Friday, August 31, 2012

Dani's Birthday!

It's time for my regularly scheduled exclamatory gasp!  What! 25 years!!! How can that be?  It honestly feels like maybe 5 years, or a lifetime.  My beautiful girl, I feel like I have always known her, she's always been a huge blessing in my life.  She is a delight.

She's been a delight to me from the get go.  She was cranky but adorable and smart and fun as a baby.  Then she was precocious and energetic and sweet as a toddler.  When she was a little girl she was inquisitive and thoughtful and mature.  In school she was a hard worker (until high school, then she was more into playing :) )  She's always been just a wonderful wonderful girl and now, now I am blown away at what an awesome, terrific woman she's grown up to be.  She's mature and spiritual and does good and I am soooo pleased that she is my daughter.

Happy Birthday!!!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

 Ziva has been coughing and sneezing.  Since she's such a baby we were worried that she had kennel cough for something more serious.  I was planning on subbing today but cancelled and headed off to the vet.  We needed to take her anyway and we had a good visit.  Z is a cutie little doggie.  Anyway, she seems fine, no worms, no intestinal problems, a virus so she got an antibiotic.  After our trip to the vet, which daddy joined us on, we went to Petco to look for some better grooming equipment.  R looked at that while Z and I tried on Halloween costumes.  Lu already has a great plan for her but we couldn't resist trying some on.  She didn't like the witch hat very much, the hot dog a little better.  I think she will like her actual costume :)
 Interesting story, E is an eater.  He is the light weight of the family, all muscle and skinnyness.  We have to buy pants with the red elastic pulls on the waist or they will fall off his buns, yet he eats a lot.  He eats breakfast, lunch and snack at school.  Then he comes home and has a sizable snack, like two corn dogs, or a handful of cookies, or a sandwich or bowl of soup, then he eats dinner, then at night he wants another "snack", something hearty.  He's 10.  I am scared for when he is 15!
We've been watching the Republican National Convention.  Ann Romney did a great job the other night.  So did Paul Ryan.  Tonight the main man is speaking.  I have been enjoying the warm up speeches a lot.  It makes me proud to be Mormon.  I always am.  This is what I think is really great about being Mormon, besides that it is God's true church on Earth, and that I have an unshakable testimony of that.  I know Joseph Smith was a prophet and that Thomas S Monson is one today.  I know God speaks to them and makes His will known.  I know the Book of Mormon is true. I am grateful for that knowledge and of course that is important and I love that.  Regardless though there is something else I love and that is that Mormons are good people.  They serve and are kind and thoughtful and charitable and honest.  They are happy and generous and put their money/time/resources where their  mouth is.  Like every group of people there are all kinds, good, bad, in the middle but I honestly feel that as a group we do have those qualities, or at least try to have them actively.  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is a force for good.   I don't know how this election will go but I hope that the voters will see that and understand that if they want good morals, and a leader who will be true to his convictions, who will work hard for this country and it's people, who will be selfless they need to look to him and not to four more years of Obama. 

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

call me honey boo boo

Sometimes I am so ghetto I crack myself up.
Tonight was one of those times.
Ziva has been looking kind of peacocky on the head, her hair is growing fast and dog grooming is $$.  Also today she got sick, she's had the runs.  NOT a good thing when we are still going through puppy potty training.  Thankfully I have a great carpet cleaner.  But her back end was looking worse for wear.
Plus yesterday I washed our bathroom rugs and mopped the bathroom and bleached and scrubbed so it was all fresh.
What I didn't realize was that it is a blue moon, and the stars have aligned making the perfect conditions for some hilly billy frolicking fun in the bathroom.
Take those 3 seemingly unrelated events, put them together under a full moon, throw in 2 fat 40 year olds, one 4 lb puppy, a hot shower, a pair of clippers and you have set the scene.

I was holding Z, and laughing.  R was wielding the clippers and all business, Z was not thrilled.  After we messed up the main area, rugs and sink we moved to the shower.  Finally after some torturous, hilarious minutes we emerged, wet, shaking (Z), scratched up (R) and laughing (me) although this time I had the uncharacteristically good sense to keep it in.

So my bathroom is a mess.  The dog is looking pretty scrappy although clean and we saved $25.  Whew!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

First Week

Jenna at the top of Mt Timpanogos
 These two girls are busy.  I am so excited for them, I live vicariously through their reports ;) as I never got to go away to school.  I am very happy that the three big girls have all done that and had the chance to live with roommates and take classes and socialize.  Very fun!  Anyway,  Jenna started school this week.  She has a good and bad list.  Bad: she hasn't had time to unpack yet since moving to her new apartment, she had her car towed last night :(, and she's been living on dry cereal.  Finding time to do chores is becoming and challenge for J, she even started classes without having gone to buy books and paper, her lap top is a dinosaur and is dieing, and she's unhappy with her car.  Good: she LOVES BYU!! ( told you so), she has an AWESOME WONDERFUL FANTASTIC boyfriend, she and Emma are finally Roomies!!! and she likes her job and her classes.  Sounds like more good than bad to me, and the bad will work itself out. 
Sierra's fb profile picture
Sierra is a senior, although I think she may have 2 semesters left after this one before she has a degree.  She is also busy, also doing well, but has time to buy groceries :)  Time to sleep is another issue :)  She has all her classes on Thursday and Saturday this semester, leaving lots of time to work at MiMi's Cafe, which she likes (although the money isn't that great).  She is a FHE mom and has lots of play dates with Tatum, she just told me she wasn't coming home for Christmas :(  What?!?!  Maybe she'll change her mind.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Ziva update

Little Z is doing well. She stays in her crate happily, at first she was whiney but she is better now.  She often does her business where she should...not always but often.  She does not like her food and prefers to forage for dropped dinner crumbs or to "share" Millie's dinner. The children love to play with her and she does funny puppy stuff.  I myself get a lot more fresh air than I used to including in the middle of the night, wearing my pajamas and dancing around on the wet grass in my barefeet while alternately looking up at the stars which are gorgeous or looking down and urging her to "do her business".

Sunday, August 26, 2012

weekends go by fast, even if you don't do anything noteworthy

Friday night was the first soccer game of the season.  We lost.  2-3.  It was a disappointment.
I didn't actually get to go to the game.  I had a camp meeting/ycl party to go to.  It was at Carol's house and we had a fun time.

Saturday we cleaned out the garage and moved some stuff around in the storage room.  R went to soccer training and Lu played with Genevive, who lives two doors down, most of the day.  The girls ran between our houses and had a good time.

Saturday night we went on a date.  We wanted to see a movie, but it was sold out.  We did get to go to dinner and then brought home a redbox movie.

The weekend flew by.  Right now Lu is tucked into bed.  Ethan is downstairs playing with the dogs, Hannah has not been home from church yet as she had choir practice then BYD, she should be home soon.  R is out home teaching.

Friday, August 24, 2012


Z is making herself right at home.  She has gone from puppy potty training protege to ..well, lets just say we started a "new carpet" fund.  I forgot that I don't really like puppies.  I like having a good dog, and I am sure she will be one and the kids ADORE her and she is a super cute little fluff ball but I will be happy in a few months when this is behind us (and I am walking on berber :) )

School has gone well.  The first two days anyway.  Hannah is doing homework, likes her teachers, is cheerful (except when she sprayed Grace in the face with carpet cleaner and got grounded from friends for the weekend) , has French flash cards made already and wrote a very funny snapshot for English. 
Ethan reports that all he heard about Ms Sterling was not true and that she is funny and loud and he thinks it's going to be a good year.
Grace likes her teacher as well, has been happy with her sack lunches and checked out some fun books at the library.
Next week S and J start school.  I hope they are equally pleased as their little siblets.

Yesterday I subbed.  I would like to find a real job, that is part time.  Anyone??

We have reinstated the media free school days policy and it's a little hard because frankly we are all addicted but I am really pleased.  The kids have been playing with friends, playing with the dog, reading.  The other day H and E and I were standing around the island talking and they were making me laugh so hard I may have peed my pants a little.  I do love it when the TV is off.  TMI I know.  The bummer of a well abused bladder.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

First day of School

 First day of school!! Hurray!!!! So exciting!!  Hannah is now in 8th grade?! Crazy crazy.  Yesterday we went and met all her teachers.  I especially liked her social studies teacher, she is in her 39th year of teaching at LMS and seems really fun!  Hannah is excited about studying French and Art and dressing up every day!
 This boy is in his last year of elementary school.  We also met his teacher and he was happy to find his friend John in his class again this year.  Hopefully it will be an awesome year with lots of good learning.
 Little Miss is now in 2nd grade.  Her teacher is Mrs. Bolton and there are 6 kids from our neighborhood in her class so that will be super fun. 
Standing at the bus this morning there were a ton of parents and while the bus pulled away there was a spontaneous cheer from the group!  Schools in! Schools in!!

What did I do with my day?
First I washed the car,
then I vacuumed it,
went to Target wearing my happy shoes!, wandered around my happy place,
came home and did some laundry,
took Z out several times,
did an on line training for subbing,
and it's only 2:12. 
Still lots of work to do, but lots of peace and quiet to do it in...minus a puppy who takes a lot of time.  I forgot. I love having a dog, the puppy part isn't the best part of it though, although the cutest!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012


For several decades I never remembered my dreams.  This was the cause of some disappointment to me.  I felt like maybe I was missing some key insight to my psyche or perhaps subconscious or other guidance.  For whatever reason the last couple of years I have dreamt and remembered my dreams, not always but several times a week.  This has been the cause of great disappointment because my subconscious is a ridiculous place with no redeeming messages or symbolism.  For example last night I dreamt that I went to get a hair cut, there I met a very nice lady and we decided to go out to lunch together.  I called a third friend.  As we set off to eat Patrick, yes from sponge bob, joined us.  We were all walking down Lancaster Blvd, where I grew up looking for a restaurant that I thought was so great (which does not exist on the real Lancaster Blvd) when Patrick turned the other way.  The two ladies (who were strangers to me) and I tried to run away from him.

Interpretation thereof:
a) I  need a hair cut
b) the children need to start school because SB is on way too much at our house
c) I need to make friends who want to go out to lunch more
d) I should go visiting teaching so the ladies I visit aren't strangers to me


Monday, August 20, 2012

that special time of night...

 when the children go to bed and mom and dad can have the dogs all to themselves :)

We drove home from Ohio today and even though it took a little bit longer than normal Ziva did great, she did not have a single accident.  We were surprised, and pleased.  The kids took turns holding her the whole way home and between Z and the new headphones they all have it was a quiet drive.

When we got home we introduced Millie to her new sister (grand daughter?).  We expected that to go well, and it did.  They were friendly and playful. 

It was a good trip.  Maybe too good, the children want to move to Ohio.  Lu made a list of the top 6 reason she wants to move.

1. She gets to spend time w/ Nana and Abba
2. Uncle Brian is very funny.
3. She likes the heated pool.
4. She likes the new cat.
5. She likes to play indoor golf with Abba.
6. Nana's food is very good.

Ethan added to the list,
he likes going actual golfing
he likes the good food
he likes that Uncle Brian is always interesting and especially liked the quiz he brought over this time.

Sunday, August 19, 2012


 My two handsome men looking dapper in their matching suits.  Also little princess Lu and her daddy.  We enjoyed visiting the Centerville ward today.  They were super friendly and I loved the talks too, took some notes, enjoyed the whole thing.
 Ethan made a friend across the street, a boy named Adam.  He's been playing soccer with him.  He also got to go golfing this weekend with Dylan and Abba and Larry.  The two boys had an awesome time and begged for another round when they were done.
 In other surprising news we got a dog.  It was kind of crazy.  We have been talking about a second dog for close to a year and knew we wanted either a havanesse or a bichon or a poodle mix of some kind.  We haven't been able to find one that was reasonably priced or near us. While we were here we stumbled upon the perfect little dog, a girl who is a poochon (a mix of poodle and bichon).  She is adorable.  We are calling her Ziva and besides having to drive home tomorrow with her in the car which will be a bit of a pain we are all super excited!

Saturday, August 18, 2012


 Nana and Abba got a new cat. Her name is Missy and our little Lu loves her.  She is an animal lover for sure. Sometimes she even goes next door to play with Matthew and Sarah's gerbils, or down the street to play with one of the animals that Julia's mom is currently fostering.  She is in 7th Heaven playing with the cats here.  Well, Darrell pretty much hides and ignores her, he's above such games.  Missy though loves to play!
 She hops into anything that is available, here she is in a bag that recently got emptied. I am not a cat person (well, really it's the whole litter box thing that I don't like) but I have to admit that this one is cute, she's a funny little kitty and very playful.


You've had a birthday shout hurray!
We're going to sing to you today!
One year older and Wiser too!
Happy Birthday to You!!!

Today is little Tatum's birthday! She is such a big girl! Can't wait to give her a big hug and kiss in a couple of weeks. 

more birthday!

 We decided to take a last minute trip to Ohio.  Grandpa Thacker turned 93 and Hannah turned 13 so we had a birthday bash for them! So far it's been a nice trip, relaxing.  We've slept in.  The kids have swam, we've sat on the veranda and crocheted and watched the birds and talked.  E and R have played soccer.  Kids have played with their ipods.  Last night many went to see the new Bourne movie, which I wanted to see but volunteered to stay home with missy Lu.  We've eaten cake and fruit and the weather is perfectly pleasant.  What a nice getaway!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


 Today is Hannah's 13th Birthday!!!  So fun! She had some very specific requests for her birthday.  She did not want to have a party.  She wanted to have breakfast in bed, followed by pedicures and lunch.  She wanted to go to the movies and see "The Odd Life Of Timothy Green" and then have the Martines' over for dinner.  She wants to have mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, chicken pitas, monkey bread, hawaiian bread and Sister Black's cinnamon rolls for dinner.  She also did not want any presents but an ipod/pad.

Early this morning Grace and I started phase one of the celebratory plans.  We bought a bunch of orange and pink balloons and blew them up, in some of them we hid money which we folded up and slid in before blowing.  Hannah gets up late (as all teenagers like to do) so I figured no sweat we can go in at 7am and put them on her bed and she'll be surprised.  Nope, the second we walked in she sat up and said "what's going on?".  Surprise!  We brought the rest in and told her we hid her present in some of the balloons.  She had to pop them to find the $, and now she can start saving for that ipad.   Then we went downstairs, including her, I guess she forgot about the bedroom breakfast service :)

Monique kept E and Lu for us this morning so we were able to continue with her agenda! We grabbed Chelsea and met Christianna and Johnna and went to the salon.  All our toes turned out so cute!
 Next on the list was lunch.  We went to Okada a favorite of ours.  It was a lot of fun eating and laughting with the girls.
 After lunch we went and got the little two and headed to the movies.  I really liked Timothy Green.  So did Lu.  H and Chelsea said they didn't get it to which Lu answered, "I think it was mostly about how it's better to have something you love for a little while than not at all".  E said he didn't like it either and we should have seen Batman.
Now we are home preparing an edited version of Hannah's requested dinner menu.  I deleted some of the bread, and then she'll be off to YW.  I hope it's been a memorable and awesome 13th birthday.  I know for me it's been a memorable and wonderful 13 years!

Monday, August 13, 2012


 School starts next week.  We're squeezing the last bits of fun from summer while we can.  Today we went swimming.  The Martines' came with us, which is always very fun!
Tonight for FHE we had a fun story from the Friend and then made art for our bathroom.  It turned out very snazzy. Can't wait for it to dry so I can hang them up.  Then we took a pajama clad ride to get some frostys.  Yumm.  Fun!

big girl update

Sierra at the rodeo with some friends
 I don't get to blog about the big girls very much, they live way across the country (but I am very grateful that they are near each other and some of the family, and that they are doing great).  I think about them all the time and look forward to the times we are together. 
Sierra is such a beautiful girl, if I do say so myself :) , she just started a new job at Mimi's Cafe, has a busy busy social life and is a senior at UVSC.  She's had some difficulty settling on a major but she's back to accounting now and even though she doesn't think it's too exciting I think she'll see it through.  It will be a good skill to have and I think more versatile than she thinks.  She's a very good student and doesn't find college too challenging.  I think this means she should go to grad school...but we'll see :)  I have lots of great ideas about what Sierra should do, I try and keep them to myself because she has her own ideas and they are probably better than mine anyway!
Clayton and Jenna
 Jenna spent the beginning of summer working at Vivint.  She thought it was mind-numbingly boring and recently got a new job at Awful Waffle.  I haven't heard how she likes it.  She and Clayton are enjoying dating and getting to know each other. They have a lot of fun together, I am looking forward to meeting him in Sept.  She's doing well in school and anticipates about 5 more semesters until she's done with a BA.  She's decided to get a degree in human development w/ a psychology minor.  Jen is a lot of fun, she always has lots of plans and ideas!  so it's always a surprise to see what she comes up with next.  I don't know if she and Clayton will marry, or if she was do something different.  Whatever she chooses I'm sure she'll do great!
Dani opening some cute pink presents, JaNee taking notes!
Lastly is little Momma, Dani.  She is busy busy.  She and Tate work at the gym daycare, at least Tate thinks she works there too :)  She is the activity day leader in her ward and is busy cooking little Penny.  Last week she had a fun baby shower.  I am hoping Penny makes her debut soon.  We are excited to meet her!!  She and Greg are kind of house-hunting.  They are anxious after almost 6 years of living in apartments to get into a place of their own.

Saturday, August 11, 2012


E is still injured.  Hopefully he'll recover soon. 
R worked today.  Around 3 o clock he called and E answered the phone.  R told E he was on his way home.  They hung up and E relayed the message to me, then he said "why is dad coming home so early?"  I said "It's Saturday" to which I received a blank look.  He's a hard worker and there's been some pretty historic stuff happening so right now he is busier than usual.

When he got home we took Hannah to meet up with the rest of the youth, they were going on a temple trip.  She looked so grown up and is such a good girl!  Yesterday she and Chelsea went to help on Chase's eagle scout project, they worked for many hours and reported that it was a lot of fun.  I am happy she has learned to serve others.
We had several daddy errands to do after.  We had to go to Ace Hardware, Ford, the Bike Doctor and to look for new suit for him.  Between errands we stopped at Cafe Rio (his first time).  While at the mall getting a very handsome suit we also walked around and found some good deals on sales and ate some ice cream.  It was pretty fun.
This little girl was a very pleasant shopper today.  She also was quite a little reader (as she often is).  Today we read 5 piggie and elephant books, read Edgar, Allen and Poe and the Beating Beets, finished a chapter book we've been enjoying called The Secret Chicken Society and started a new chapter book Like Pickle Juice on a Cookie. 

Friday, August 10, 2012

belated birthday

Ethan's birthday was some time ago but we were busy and although I thought we could do with a family party he did not and remembered weeks later that I had said we could do a friend party if there was time.  And now there is time.
We invited a few soccer friends and he hoped for a repeat of last years soccer fest. 

This morning we awoke to the sounds of rain.  What!
Ethan assured me it would not rain all day, we made some back up plans, which included some minute to win it games and a  movie just in case.  He was right though, no rain.

The boys arrived and within 5 minutes E injured his wrist.  It was kind of bad and he lay on the couch with ice for a long bit.  Finally he felt up to some "quiet" games.  We played awhile, ate some pizza, played some more games and then the boys ran outside.  They played man hunt, can jam, and soccer and then Ethan reinjured his wrist :(

He then plopped on the couch for the duration.  The rest of the boys were sweet to him and eventually asked if he minded if they still had fun.  He said go and they ran to the park.  They took Lu with them, which she was thrilled about.

So the party while not a hit was not a disaster either.  He said it was fun.  The boys had a good enough time.  Lu thought it was the best party ever. 


Alec and his friends had a video recorder on while they were flying.  The footage has now gone viral and is all over the Internet.  It's amazing to watch.  I am really glad he's fine. 

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

mission call

oh my goodness! I am so excited!! Mom and Dad got their mission call...they are going to Montreal Canada, a mere 11 hours 18 minutes from beautiful So Maryland!! Yeah!!! I am so thrilled for them, there is no greater joy than being in the service of  God. I know they will love it, love the people and be great missionaries.
Also I am particularly thrilled that it is so close to here.  Hopefully we can get up there at least twice while they are there.  Whoo Hooo!!!!!!

cute little future missionaries!!

looking forward

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

friends, food, FHE

 Today we have Maggie and Daniel spending the day with us.  The kids were pretty excited, and I don't mind at all having friends over.  It is interesting to me how they play.  Ethan and Daniel play soccer.  All day.  Or watch it.  I have to step in only to hand out band aids and Gatorade.

update: E informs me that while they did play some soccer Daniel does not like to play it all day?? so they had to supplement with other things.  In any case they were low maintenance.

Maggs and Lu however are a different story.  They play by getting out lots of stuff and "setting it up".  I have to intervene to settle things like who gets to wear the mermaid fin first, who gets to the be the queen, teacher, mom, princess, star, shop keeper, maker of the rules, picker of the games.  They mostly play well together but there is always tons to clean up after and refereeing during.
We've had dinner company this week.  Sunday evening we shared our break the fast dinner with the elders.  Very fun.
Monday night we invited our next door neighbors over for FHE and dinner.  It was also a pleasant evening.  We ate, had a little lesson then played Disney headbandz. 
Bonus is that R liked dinner both nights and I got lots of compliments.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Beach Party

 Today was our annual beach party on the square.  I was looking forward to it.  R couldn't go because he had soccer training, the kids didn't want to go.  I made them and it was okay.  It was hot and not as many people were there as past years.   Grace did have fun doing the hula hoop contest and the limbo and eating a snow cone.  Hannah and I looked at some vendors and talked so some friends.  Ethan played volleyball the whole time.
 We only stayed an little over an hour and they were happy to go home.  It was okay.  We've been having a hard time in the Casa de U. lately.  There's been some fighting and some being mean and a lack of wanting to obey and do chores (and that's just R and I...kidding).  Family life isn't always bliss at home, I am anxious for back to school, things to do, media free days, too much free time and fun is not good for little johnny.  Sadly the children are too old for a Bernstein Bear book to save the day. Luckily I know another book that's even better :)

hats, cute and otherwise

 I have been watching Downton Abbey the last few weeks.  It has been a delight.  I love Dame Maggie Smith in HP and even more here, she is so cute and funny.  I also love the hats and this morning I watched the end of season 2 the Christmas party and I was TH-RILL-ED when Lady Mary and Matthew finally got engaged.  As happy as I was for Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy.  I am tempted not to watch the next season because I don't want anything to go wrong for them and if I stop now in my head they can always be happy.
 I have also been learning to crochet this summer.  ahem!  Originally I wanted to make the cute little witch hat below for Penny, who is spending her very first Halloween with her very delighted Mimi.  Isn't it cute?  I thought I'd better practice before tackling such a project so I made the above hat.  I am not sure what went wrong but clearly it's dreadful.  These things always look better on Pinterest, or in my head.  Well, I am starting on the witch hat despite all evidence that I am not up to the task so wish me luck.
R is at soccer coach training.  He had homework all week, hours and hours and now 16 hours of class time ahead of him this weekend.  Hopefully it will be fun.

Yesterday we went school supply shopping.  The kids had fun, the bank book did not.  We are now stocked up on paper, pencils, crayons, magic soap, dry erase markers, kleenex, and all the other things we needed to buy for the classrooms.  We also have our lunch boxes, back packs, and new shoes.  We can start school.

The kids have been playing with friends, having friends over, going to friends homes about every day.  We've been swimming.  Two more weeks of summer.  I am ready.  I do love summer but cooler weather, a nice schedule and quiet days will be lovely.