Sunday, June 22, 2008

8 Years!

I am a couple of days late in posting this, but I always love this time of June.

Eight years ago, on June 21, 2000, I entered the M.T.C. for my mission to Neuquen, Argentina. And I can honestly say it was the BEST 18 months of my life. And by far the HARDEST. Much harder than I thought it would be. And far more REWARDING than I dreamed of. I honestly think I would go back in a heart beat if given the second chance
.The M.T.C. was such a wonderful place for me. I had a great companion and awesome district. For those that don't know, I met Elder Smythe there. Wonderful District Leader. :) It was a long 9 weeks and also some of the funnest times. Then it was off to Argentina. Jason is standing right next to me.I remember meeting all my family and friends there in the airport, (pre 9/11) and having a final chance to say good bye. It was HARD!!! I can remember crying my heart out to my mom and telling her that I didn't want to go anymore and that I had changed my mind. She may not even have heard what I said as it was probably impossible to understand me through all my sobs. And I distinctly remember her saying to me, "Oh what? You want me to take your luggage off the plane and cancel everything?!!" Telling me in a sarcastic tone. And I immediately said, "YES!" She gave me a last hug and encouraged me as a mom does. Even the Elder in charge of traveling got off the plane to make sure I was going to board it. My dad told him, "Yes, she is coming. And help her with her things." It's funny to think back on that day and all those crazy emotions I went through. I now see that was only the beginning. I arrived in Argentina as the only sister, and was very anxious to meet the President and his wife. Presidente George y Hermana George. WONDERFUL WONDERFUL people. He taught me some of life's greatest lessons. And Hermana George taught me priceless principles of motherhood. I will never forget them or the impact they had on my life as a woman, mother, wife and child of God. They were prefect examples of the life I want to live. It's amazing to be such an intricate part of building the Kingdom of God. Something I need to focus on more often than I do.I could obviously go on and on about my mission experience and how it was incredible, amazing, life changing, challenging, strengthening, etc. But I won't. :) That is what my mission journals are for. I just wanted to document this special time for me to remember and think about. It never hurts to have reminders of the things that make us who we are. And for me, I am still learning from my mission. I can't imagine my life without that experience. Especially without Jason. :)
Ahhh, June 21st.
(I aplogize for the horrible quality of my pictures. I have no clue how to work my scanner. Just pushing the button isn't seeiming to work. So, these are pictures of pictures). And proof that I can get dirty when for a good cause. For all those that find it hard to see me as a missionary in South America. Give me some credit! :) I would do it over and over again.

Monday, June 16, 2008


I am sitting here setting up this awesome thing my sister Jill told me about called, "My Rewards Board" and Jackson is loving it. For all you that have children that are ready to start helping out, this is great. And it is free for the first 15 days. Depending on how well he does, I just might buy it. I mean come on. I have made the charts plenty of times and know good and well that I hate having them up in my house. Messing and ugly. So, maybe this is the key to my success. But here is the reason I am posting.

All the sudden Jackson was feeling my upper arm. Then rubbing it. Then out of nowhere he said, "You have a little bit of chubs on your arm." WHAT!!!!

I laughed and said, "I do?" He said, "Yeah, a little." I told him, "No I don't." He said, "Yeah, you do."

Well, excuse me for having three kids in 3 1/2 years. And for loving chocolate chip cookies and delicious mint brownies. (Thanks a lot Jocelyn. This is all your fault!!). And for not being as serious as I should about my work outs. WAAAAAA!!!

Then he asked me if he had chubby arms. I told him no. And then he asked about his legs. And his face. And then his buns. LOL! So, I told him he didn't have any chubs anywhere. Then I took the scary step of asking him if I did. And bless his heart. . . I only have chubs on my arms. :)

Friday, June 13, 2008

Too scared to hike?

Me: "You guys want to go hiking tomorrow?"

Jackson: "Nah. I'm too scared of wolves and bears."

Noah: "Yeah, I want to go hiking."

Jackson: "The bears can scratch through our tents Noah." (Telli
ng him in a warning voice. . . like he better think twice).

Noah: "Yeah!! Bears!"

And there is the personality of my boys.

On another note, I got a new stroller and I can't wait to get it!! I have been coveting many a stroller the last 6 months or so and just can't seem to find one that I am happy with. Why can't someone design the perfect stroller? It doesn't seem too hard to me. Is a mom
ever involved in it? Ever?
~cup holder for both parent and child. Like bigger than a bottle of water.
~napper bar

~good storage basket

~fold easily

Is that too much to ask for?

A few weeks ago I bought the Peg Perego double side by side. No good. I own the Combi side by side and have loved it, but seriously need a new stroller. Just for the look of something new and not abused. It has been almost 3 years. I am ready! The sit and stand sounds like a good idea, but I seriously dislike pushing that long of an object. And the nicest brand I could find was still not that nice. I returned the Peg Perego (thanks Libby) and bought this:

I hope it will be prefect. Or at least closer to perfect than any of the rest. Noah refuses to sit in the stroller so I bought a nice single. PLEASE BE GOOD!!! I will let you all know for future stroller purchases. (To my sister. They make a nice double side by side).

And I am posting random pictures just so grandparents can get SUPER excited for this little clan to come soon. :)LOVE this little addition to our back yard. Perfect for Ellie and the boys are enjoying it too.Shoving her mouth full of blueberries.Noah, Nora and Jackson at the Mt. Lebanon pool this week. The weather here has been so hot! We went to Nora's pool (a country club) last week and now the community pool seems like a total dump. Bring on the country club for me!! Post to come. Libby found out where the nearest Nordstrom is from here and we decided to take a day and scout it out. I had a great time. Minus my CRAZY and out of control children the last 2 hours. Next time I go, it will be without kids. I still managed to spend plenty of money. No worries. Poor Melanie was stuck in the middle of the van with small children surrounding her. You are strong Mel.

The UPS man delivered my stroller an hour ago and it is AWESOME!! And since I forgot to tell you the name of it. . . Baby Planet Solo Deluxe. I am loving it. But I have only pushed it around my house. All 12 feet of my house. :)

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Just to remember

This is simply for my own memory.

Today, while driving to the mall I asked Jackson (and Noah) if they knew what religion we were. A friend of mine and I were talking today in her car and her daughter repeated us saying "I'm a Mormon" and I wondered if Jackson would know to tell someone that if he was asked. Nope.

So I said, "Are we Mormon?"

Jackson said, "Oh yeah. I am a Mormon." (Noah repeated him).

Then I kept on driving. Baby Einstein was blasting in the back round and I was enjoying the quiet in the front of the van. :)

Then Jackson asked me, "Mom, when is Jesus going to come again?" I said, "One day He will come again and it will be wonderful. But no one knows when that will be."

Then he said, "So, I guess he will just land then? Maybe fly?" (I am pretty sure he was talking about taking an airplane). I smiled. And then had no clue how to explain His "arrival" so I said, "Almost like He is floating."

Jackson just stared out the window and I could tell he was trying to picture it. For him, I think it was fun to imagine Jesus flying. And I thought it was so sweet that he wanted to know more about Jesus coming again. I know Jason and I try to talk about those things often, but never often enough. I am thankful for primary teachers that teach him so much. He is at such an impressionable age.

This was just a simple little memory that I wanted to have forever.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

About time!

I have been seriously out of it when it comes to blogging. I guess I just needed a good break from it. And my mom has been asking faithfully for a new update. She misses my kids. Not my stories. :) So, I am going to just post a few pictures and say we are all good.

The weather is great. The kids are as cute as ever and we are getting ready to go on vacation in a couple of weeks to Oregon and Utah. The boys are really excited to see their grandparents.
I took this tonight because I loved how she was laying in her crib. Those pj's won't stay snapped right there on the thigh because they are so juicy! :)

This was taken right before we left for the ward Memorial Day Party. It was a lot of fun and I have a super committee that does so much to help me. THANKS! It turned out wonderful.
Just eating donuts in the front yard.
A nice day at the park with some friends. Jackson and Jack were loving it!
We went to dinner with some friends a few nights ago and before we ate let the boys run in the water. We did change their clothes after. :) Jackson loved it. Noah didn't want to get wet.
Ellie and Jack eating dinner together at the Cheesecake Factory.
Last night we had a Girls Night at my house that was a lot of fun. I couldn't find a babysitter and Jason was on call so we decided to just do it at my house and wear our comfy clothes and eat treats. What could be better than that? I always love my girl time and the friendships that I build and strengthen. These girls here in Pittsburgh really mean a lot to me and I am so grateful for the friendships we have. (Sniffle, sniffle). :) Getting to church by 9am was rough this morning, but totally worth the 2am late night!!!
(Back row: Linda, Melanie, Gina, Mary Jane. Front row: Elise, Debi, Rachelle, Jana, Jodelle, Libby)