Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Crazy Creative Kids

So to give you a sampling of our crazy creative kids. The boys like to draw during sacrament meeting. I didn't mind too much until I saw the drawings. Here is a sampling. Hmmmm...looks like they aren't getting too much out of church so I stopped bringing the paper.

Here is Ashley playing "nurse" with a hypodermic needle highlighter and the mask I had to wear while taking pictures at Loma Linda for Taylor's eagle project proposal. She was supposed to be doing homework.

Here is the poem she wrote on a different day...

If you have a pain.
You hear a scream.
You see a cat
as still as that.
It means your days are past.

She scared herself with it later that night when she convinced herself that she was now going to die because she had all the symptoms of the poem. Crazy girl.

Here is Ashley taking all the bowls out to play "drums" and play on the recorder at the same time...again while she is supposed to be doing homework.

Here is Jacob trying to think of every creative way to get out of this place. It was princess night at Chick-fil-A. Jeff was gone so Jacob was with us trying every way to convince us that it was time to go home.

The only time he didn't complain was when he had food in front of him. I think the sight of all those princess made his skin crawl. (Even he had to laugh at the teenage boys dressed up like princesses to try and score free food though)

Jacob has also created I don't know how many lego and bakugan stop action movies...

Here's Taylor's creative faces...I guess he got a hold of the camera...

And here is his Easter Island head he created out of moon sand. It's held up for over 2 months and we even featured in a school project titled "my treasures.

By the way Taylor's Eagle project has officially been approved. He is now compiling a library of children's and teen books for the Loma Linda Children's hospital. So friends and is your warning that a donation letter will be coming :)

If you have any children's books or want to donate money to buy to Taylor...

Rainy Day Birthday party

We've had quite of bit of rain down here in Southern California. We're used to a day or two and then we get a break. A whole week of it and we don't know what to do with ourselves. Our backyard has officially become a lake!

Of course our pond is now filled to the brim again. I hate scooping all the water out of it. Unfortunately knowing me It won't get emptied until the day I see mosquito larvae in it, then I know I can't put it off.

I was very glad for the piece of mind I had this week knowing that our posts were already fixed. Knowing what I know now, one of the other posts could've rotted through leaving us with only one in tact! Scary thought!

On Friday after a week of veerrrry rainy weather we had a Birthday Party for Ashley.

Since it was raining and too wet to go in the backyard, use the park or do anything outside we had to plan for "inside activities"

I thought I'd start with Ashley requested snacks....

You can see how popular these were. This was after they were done with them.
That lasted about 5 minutes tops.

So they went upstairs to Ashley's room. Cute!

This lasted about 10 minutes before their was a multitude of screaming and chasing Taylor and Jacob around. OK time for some games.

One game was "hot potato" which is a classic party game from growing up that my mom taught me.

I wrapped a present a bunch of times in different paper. You pass it around until the music stops and whoever has it gets to unwrap it once. Who ever unwrapps the last piece of paper gets to keep it. They liked that one. Should've done more presents :)

Ashley loved all her presents!

Thanks guys!

So it's time for cake. Make a wish!

Ooooh I see evidence that someone is actually eating the snacks :)

Hope your wish comes true!

Oh no I look at the clock and we still have a half hour!

I pull out the stuff to make jewlery. There wasn't too much interest untill Jeff got home and offered cash prizes for 1st 2nd and 3rd place for the best bracelet maker.

That got them interested!!!

For party favors the good buys I found at Christmas at the Disney closeout store really came in handy. (have to plan ahead) Thanks for coming everyone.

Well another birthday complete just in time for dinner too.

(I highly reccommend the "after school on a Friday" birthday party.)

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Ashley's birthday was salvaged when her wonderful Primary teacher brought her over her very own plate of cookies. Sister Parker is the sweetest Primary teacher :)

Tuesday Jacob and Taylor both came home saying they had a band concert that night. Crazy kids. At least it was at the same school.

Here is Taylor with his group.

By the way Taylor auditioned for Honor Band and is going to be playing first chair! Way to go Taylor!

Here is Jacob with his group.

We didn't know that the elementary school bands were going to allow
lots of students to play solos. It was more like a recital. It was nice to listen to them but there were a lot of them. (Jeff had to bring me back home to get my car so they could go to mutual and they were still playing solos when I got back.)

Friday Jeff was asked to speak at a New York Life kickoff meeting in Santa Monica. They offered to put him up at the hotel and have me come with him to their kickoff dinner. We thought it would be a fun overnight thing for the family so we took them up on it.

When we checked out the hotel we saw it was right on the beach. Sweet. Sadly Taylor had a campout so he would miss it (He missed it the last time we did this :). It was OK though because the room was wall to wall cots and beds so there wouldn't have been room for him :)

Before we got there Jeff called me during the day and said he had just had a conversation with Mel Gibson in the lobby (they were shooting a promo for his new movie) and met the actress that played Felicity in the elevator (we couldn't remember her name) along with her husband and son. He ended up walking to the same restaurant with them, and Jeff played with her son on the way and then ate at a table across from them. Crazy.

I guess a show kind of like Access Hollywood likes to shoot their stuff in one of the rooms. I thought it was because of the view...

But one of the hotel workers said, no they actually close all the windows off and bring in their own props. I'd want the view :)

Well I didn't meet any celebrities but I did meet a lot of nice New York Life people that were very nice. Many of them told us how inspired they were with Jeff and his story.

It always makes me proud when I see how Jeff has the ability to lift people up and inspire them!

The next morning I got to check out our room more. It was decorated like it was someone's home including lots of books. How nice! I thought.

I looked at some of them. There were recipe books (what are you going to do with a recipe in a hotel room?), a book of poems, all about wineries and this very environmentally friendly book about saving a rare blue parrot from extinction. I flipped through it and it was 300+ pages of the details of saving this parrot and in the end mating the last one in the wild with someone's pet. On the last page they realized it didn't work, the male was infertile.

Sounds like a real page turner.

The Epilougue was a plea for funding. Sorry but I wouldn't make a good environmentalist. I love animals but sometimes animals go extinct. It probably happened a million times or more before we were ever here on the earth and it probably will happen again no matter what we do.

So after we got ready we headed out for breakfast. We discovered that Norms is a great place for breakfast!

After breakfast we headed over to the pier to let the kids skate on the boardwalk (They had been talking about it the whole time!)

Ashley did pretty good and only fell like 8 times...I think. She did go pretty slow though so after we were done I gave Jeff the skates (we wear the same size) and he took Jacob the other direction so he could go fast.

Ashley climbing on the play equipment waiting for the boys.

After skating we had an hour or so before it was time to check out so we checked out the pool.

Well Jeff and the kids at least.

After that it was time to check out and come home. We got there just as Taylor was getting in from his camp out. He came home dirty and happy. They drove up to Calico area and went exploring. They found some caves (they only went into the front parts) and climbed rocks.

That night Jeff and I went to the adult session of Stake Conference and heard talks to get us motivated to be better parents :) and then the next day we got to be there for Josh to be set apart as a missionary!

We'll miss Josh but we're excited for him too!

So is his family!

We also got to hear some great counsel and advice from President Ulicny. The experience got Taylor excited to go on his mission.

Jacob was more excited to be silly and then give Josh a million hugs. (I don't think Josh minded too much).

Next month it's Ian's turn.

Monday was a day off and we were greated with rain. So the kids made the best of it by playing in it and enjoying it (and getting soaking wet)...

At least they were able to enjoy some hot chocolate afterwards.

Taylor stayed dry by the computer while I tried to help him type up his stuff for his Eagle Project approval. (It was an alllll day event).

Let's just say it wasn't a vacation day for all of us. :)