"So Frequently we mistakenly believe that our children need more things, when in reality their silent pleadings are simply for more of our time."
***President Thomas S. Monson (Ensign May 1994)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Happy Birthday Noah!

Yesterday, October 28, was Noah's birthday. He's 6 years old now. That seems so crazy! I think he had a great day, he seemed to at least. He woke up bright and early, wanting to open presents. We finally gave in and let him open one small present. That seemed to hold him over for awhile.
Noah wanted me to decorate a cake for his class at school, but I wanted to bring cupcakes. We compromised and I decorated a cupcake-cake. That meant I'd have to decorate 2 cakes, one for school and one for home. The school cake turned out pretty good and he was extremely happy to have it at school. That helped make the extra work more worth while. This is his cupcake-cake for school. (It's my favorite)
He opened presents, ate pizza, cake and ice cream and played and played and played and fell asleep the moment he stopped moving. (The trick was getting him to stop moving!!)
I love this picture of him. He just couldn't wait for anyone to help. He wanted frogs on his cake, so I chose 2 different frogs. The cake for at home was a challenge. It just didn't want to work for me. In the end, I think it turned out ok.

Noah's favorite part was the inside, though!

We love Noah so much. He is such a blessing. He helps make our family complete and we are so grateful for him, especially on his birthday!


Last Friday night our ward had a chili/chowder cook-off and the kids went trunk-or-treating afterward. It was a lot of fun. There were lots of fun costumes, too! Here's just a few of the pictures that were taken.
Noah was a bat. He was very cute. I really liked his wings. I would have been happier if he would have zipped up his jacket, though. McKaylie was dressed like a mouse. I'm not sure if she looked like a mouse, but she was cute and very happy with her costume, which is all that counts to me. We have a rule in our house about trick-or-treating. Once you're 13, you're too old to go. I know, I know, some people would disagree, but little kids coming to the door begging candy is cute, teenagers coming to the door begging candy is rather pathetic. Myshel and Vance aren't thrilled about this rule now that they're both over 13. So, they decided to hand out candy at the trunk-or-treat. They also decided to post a sign for their friends. It says, "13 or older, NO CANDY". They did, however, relent and gave their friends some candy after all the little kids had come by (some of them 3-4 times).

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Ahhh Teenage Boys.....

Vance came home from school yesterday and announced that he had lots of homework and organizing to do. I wasn't sure exactly what he meant by the organizing part, but didn't ask. He then went and turned on the TV........So, playing my mom role, "Vance, I thought you had lots of homework?" His answer, "Oh yeah, I do." He said it like he'd forgotten or something. I told him to turn off the TV, get a snack and then get to work. He went into the kitchen and came back 5 minutes later with 2 sandwiches and an apple.
I had to ask......"Is that your snack?"
"Yeah, why?"
"Because it looks more like dinner."

He worked for quite awhile on his homework and then I went upstairs to get some things. I came back about 15 minutes later and my entire table was covered with his papers, books, and trash from his backpack. I looked around in shock and asked, "what happened down here? Was I gone that long?" Vance looked at me, again in complete surprise, and said, "what?" Apparently he had just dumped his backpack out on the table and spread everything out to see what all was there. It looked like he'd been "collecting" things for the entire year. I was starting to understand the organizing statement now. I also wondered to myself if he had decided to organize himself or if maybe a teacher had suggested it.....

About 20 minutes later Vance came to me with a stack of papers, "these are for you". I was a little stunned, considering I ask Vance every day if he has papers for me and his answer is always "no". So, I chose not to say anything and started going through them. Just a few of the many papers were the form for his school pictures, which they took last Tuesday, an announcement for a dinner, which was held 2 weeks ago, a fundraiser reminder, which ended last Friday, and a reminder for his parent/teacher conference, which is today. It was also the first I'd heard of it.

I couldn't do anything but laugh. I went and gave Vance a big hug (because he's a teenage boy and I know it makes him cringe) and told him that I expect to get my paperwork every day, not just when he feels like organizing. He just wriggled out of my arms and mumbled, "ok, whatever". So, I kissed him on the cheek and made him squirm even more!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Joys of Going to the Dentist......

Last Thursday I had an appointment with at the dentist's office. It was a new office that I hadn't been to before and so I was having my first "initial" appointment. They take all the x-rays and tell you what they think needs to be done and then give you an estimate of how much it will cost........

I really, I mean REALLY, didn't want to go. I don't have any particularly problem going to the dentist, but for some reason I was just really, really dreading going to this appointment. Maybe it was my woman's intuition trying to tell me something, I'm not sure.

I should have known that when I had to wait almost an hour before I was even called back that it was going to be a lousy experience. I kept telling myself that I was here, I mine-as-well just stay and finish the appointment...... But, it was frustrating sitting there waiting for so long. Here's how the visit went, keeping in mind that all I was there for was to take x-rays, have the dentist look at the x-rays and my teeth and tell me what he thought needed done. That's it, no cleaning, nothing else...............

1:45PM - I arrive for my appointment and fill out the paperwork
2:00PM - My scheduled appointment time
2:40PM - 40 minutes after my appointment was suppose to be, they called me back
They do all the x-rays, 1 panoramic, and 18 of those awful, painful, uncomfortable bite wings!!!
3:00PM - She takes me back to dentist chair, gives me my little bib and hands me the remote to the TV. I then get the typical, "the dentist will be right in to see you" bit.

During my wait in the chair, I keep having an argument with myself in my head, "You should just leave; It's ridiculous to wait this long."----- "You should just stay since it's half over; just stay and get it over with."

3 different dental technicians came in to "visit" with me while I waited, all of which, just irritated me more.......

I watched almost an entire episode of CSI before the dentist actually came in.....

3:45PM - The dentist comes in and goes over my x-rays with me and just when I think that I'm going to get done with this visit from _____, he tells me that he's just going to give some Novocaine to the patient next door and he'll be right back....OH COME ON!!!!!
4:20PM - The dentist comes back, actually looks at my teeth, tells me what he thinks needs done (it took all of about 10 minutes) and then I wait another 10 minutes while he enters everything into my record.......
4:40PM - I walk to the check-out desk and am asked to take a seat and wait some more.......I waited 5 minutes and then the man that was checking people out, left. That's was it, it was all I could take! I walked up to the desk, as politely as I could, told them that I'd been there for 3 hours now and that I wasn't waiting any longer. I told them to just mail me the estimate of my co-pay!
4:50PM - I finally leave and head home.

So, in summary, I spent 3 hours in the dentist's office so that they could take x-rays and have an initial exam form the dentist, all of which took a total of about 40 minutes! I was so irritated by the whole thing! I should have listened to my intuition and rescheduled the appointment!

Having to Say Goodbye....

Last Thursday was the first week in over a year that we didn't have speech with Miss Lindsey in Portland. It's been really hard to try and juggle a full day of school and then a 45 minute drive to Portland and then an hour session. It made for a really long day and ended up being just too much for Noah. Even, though it was only once a week, it was just too much.

Since he's been getting such great help at his new school with speech, we decided that it was time to stop making the trip to Portland and unfortunately say goodbye to Lindsey. It was a decision we had a hard time making. We went back and forth about it for several weeks. But, now that we've made the choice and we're officially done, it feels like the right one. (thank goodness!) It helped, too, that Lindsey agreed with us.

We loved going to see Lindsey. She had lots of fun with Noah and he really liked her a lot. She was completely understanding and helpful about it, too, which helped make it a little easier. And, she told us we could call her with any questions, no matter what, and if we weren't happy with the decision, that she'd work him back into her schedule. Is she wonderful or what?!? So, even though we're really sad to not see Miss Lindsey every week and we'll miss her a lot, we feel like this is the right decision, for now.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Mary Engelbreit Monday

One of the best things you can have up your sleeve is a funny bone.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Let's Go Fly a Kite........

The weather was a little warmer this weekend so on Saturday we took the kids out to fly kites. There was just barely enough breeze to get them up. It would come and go, too, so it was not the best day for kite flying. It was a good day for some family fun, though. It was just that much more exciting when we did get them up there and flying. We all really did have fun, even the teenagers. It was a nice relaxing weekend.

Autumn Colors

One thing that I love about Maine is the beautiful fall colors. Everywhere you go, you see bright oranges, reds and yellows! This is my favorite time of year. I love it when the air gets cooler and you can go for walks in your cozy sweaters. I love the colors and the leaves falling off the trees in the breeze. It's just beautiful and peaceful!

4 x 5 Tag

So Marie tagged me and since I haven't done a tag in awhile I figured I'd do this one.

4 places I go frequently: The church, commissary, Woodside Elementary School, Target
4 people I frequently recieve emails from: Netflix, LDS Nuggets, Chad, Noah's speech therapist
4 places I love to eat: Home, Applebee's, Pizza Hut, Ruby Tuesday
4 tv shows I watch: Dancing with the Stars, Numbers, Ace of Cakes, CSI New York
4 people I tag to do this on their blog...The first 4 who read this!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Mary Engelbreit Monday

Peace begins with a smile.
--Mother Teresa

Thursday, October 9, 2008

My Sweet Boy....

Last week Noah came to me and was very concerned about something. He told me that Myshel and Vance talk about getting bigger and moving out of this house and away from mom and dad. He looked so sad and he asked, "Do I have to leave you, even when I'm big?" I gave him a big hug and a kiss and I told him that he didn't ever have to leave me, that he could stay here as long as he wanted. He seemed very relieved and went off to play. After he left, I looked at Chad and told him to remind me that I said that......when Noah's 30 and won't move out!

A few nights ago we were all eating dinner and Myshel made the statement that I would be so sad and lonely when all my children had grown up and moved away. Before she could finish Noah was in tears and clearly upset. He looked at me with his tear filled eyes and said, "I thought you said that I didn't ever have to leave? I don't want to leave you, not even when I'm big!" I told him again that he didn't have to leave, not even when he was all grown up. He calmed down and went back to eating his dinner. Then Chad leaned over and whispered, "When Noah's 30 and has a family of his own, I'll remind you about how upset he was at the thought of having to leave you."

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

I Gotta Go, Gotta Go, Gotta Go To Mexico.......

Last year in second grade, McKaylie learned all about Monarch butterflies. Besides the obvisous science connection, there were 2 reasons for them studying monarchs. One, the entire school was also learning all about Mexico and since monarch butterflies migrate to Mexico it made sense. The second reason, Maine has lots of monarch caterpillars. They studied them in depth and her teacher even had a few chrysalis in the classroom that became butterflies.

McKaylie was/is our resident expert. She knows everything about them, from caterpillar to butterfly. Her favorite book last year was one that her teacher read to the class and let McKaylie borrow for awhile. I think it's called "Gotta Go". It's a book about a little monarch caterpillar, that changes to a butterfly all the while saying, "I gotta go, gotta go, gotta go to Mexico". It really was a very cute book.

This year, Vance's science teacher taught them a little about the monarchs, too. So, for several days, Vance and McKaylie went on the hunt for monarch caterpillars. They were both really excited when they found one, too. They made a nice little home for it, filled with milkweed and they waited, and hoped....... Sure enough, that little caterpillar started doing what little monarch caterpillars are suppose to do....They were both so excited to see it go into it's "J", getting ready to start it's crysalis.I have to admit, it was kind of exciting. It was hard not to get a little excited about what could/would happen.....by the next morning it was in it's crysalis and they were even more excited (and so was I)

McKaylie told us that right before it comes out of the crysalis, it would turn clear and that we could see the butterfly inside. Exciting huh?!? So, we waited paitently.....and then we waited somewhat patiently.....and then we wondered if anything was really happening in there.....and then we got down right impatient....But, that's about when we started to see signs that things were happening......

Which made us really, really excited. I mean, I'd never seen this happen before! How many people really get to see a butterfly come out of its crysalis? Plus, it was so fun to watch the kids. It was like waiting for Christmas morning, they were so giddy about it. Can you see the butterfly inside the crysalis? Amazing isn't it! This is what it looked like when we went to bed last night.This morning Vance came running up the stairs. (I heard him before I saw him) "Mom, mom, it's coming out of the crysalis. There's a crack in it!" So we hurried downstairs and sure enough it was coming out. I didn't grab my camera in time to get a picture of it until after it was out, though. You can see what's left of the clear crysalis next to the butterfly.It's beautiful isn't it, but that's not all of it. It hasn't stretched out it's wings completely yet. Vance told me that it's wing span would be 4 times as long as the crysalis. I was skeptical, but, he was right.It spent quite a bit of time (hours) drying out it's wings. It stayed on the branch just like this. Every once in awhile it would lift it's wings just a tiny bit. I had to keep reassuring the kids that when it was ready to try and fly, we'd know. Chad and Myshel left for school and McKaylie and Noah kept watch....... Just a short time before the bus came, it started to walk around and crawl to the top of the branch. It also started spreading it's wings more and our resident expert informed us that it was a girl! (Boys have one round black spot on the orange of their wings) Oh they were excited. "It's ready, mom! It's ready! We have to left it outside now!" They were right, it was ready, so, outside we went.While we watched the butterfly flutter around and get ready to fly, the kids decided to name it. Her name is Crystal, because she came out of a crysalis. I thought it was very appropriate.We left Crystal sitting on this stick and went to the bus stop. After the kids were off, I came back and checked on her but she was gone. We never did get to see her fly, which is a bit disappointing. We did get to watch her change from a caterpillar to this beautiful butterfly, though, and that's pretty amazing, I think. Besides, she's a busy butterfly......She's gotta got, gotta go, gotta go to Mexico!

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