Friday, January 31, 2014

January update

Normally life slows down after the holidays. This year it seems like it has sped up some. Some good things, some bad and some just busy.
A good thing was Ashley was on the honor roll and I got to come celebrate with her.


Notice her's been in the 70's and 80's here and hasn't felt like summer at all!

This month Taylor was reminded by his friends that another mousetrap car was due (he forgot).
He threw away the one he used the year before :(
The good thing was he saved the wheels and he was able to design this one more quickly than the one he made last year.
His procrastinating ways haven't been too bad for him...we found out this month that Taylor got accepted to UCR! He knew he was accepted to Cal State San Bernardino and he's waiting to hear from a couple more.
I asked him if he's excited and he said "Oh I forgot I got accepted" Ha ha, I think its hard for him to be thinking about college when he's still in the middle of his high school year.
This month I had the opportunity to speak at the Saturday Session of our Stake Conference (a regional church meeting).
My topic was Maximizing your potential as a daughter of god.
As I went through my tasks for the next couple of weeks I was able to study, ponder and reflect on the topic and my life and write notes down. I had notes everywhere! It was a process to get it all together and feel comfortable with it but it turned out in the end.

 Like any time when you are trying to do something good a lot of frustrating things happened in the middle of this. I got to the point where I started expecting it and would laugh to myself thinking "OK what's next!" The up side was I felt like I was being blessed even in the midst of these frustrations. 

 The first day after my invitation I had a visit from a guy that is going to do some needed repair work on the house. He gave me 2 hours of the worst case scenario and told me more than once if it was him he would move. Left me feeling unsettled for sure.
The next day Ashley and I were pulling out to go to school and we see something in the middle of the street. Ashley looked and said "Is that dad's ipad??"
He had taken off for work with it on the back of his car and it was laying in the street beat up and shattered.  The good thing was we picked it up before a car ran over it and we have insurance on it.
So ...its being fixed right now.

The next day Taylor got a street sweeping ticket. He left his car home for finals week and we all forgot about street sweeping day.
My friend tried to warn me but by the time I got home it was too late.
Our ticket count is now up to 3 :(

That same day was Ashley's 12th birthday and when I got to the school of course there wasn't any parking ...and of course by the time I walked from where I could park and back to her classroom the cupcakes all fell over, got frosting everywhere and looked like a huge mess.
Not appetizing at all.
So much for my Martha Steward attempt to have cute ice cream cone cupcakes :(

Luckily all her friends ate them anyway and didn't seem to mind that there was frosting all over the sides of them.
( I was ready to throw the rest of them in the trash but on our way off campus there were lots of willing takers to finish them off. )

That night Ashley got a gift from us and opened a couple of gifts her friends gave her that day. She had a lot of people wish her happy birthday and she said it was a great day at school. Her birthday was also her first opportunity to go to mutual (a youth group). She got to do a spa day that night and had fun.

We had so much going on that weekend that Ashley's much anticipated slumber party (with 2 friends) was having to be postponed a week so we took her to Famous Dave's for dinner instead.
She was sung to and had a giant ice-cream Sunday.


Friday night I had the Mother/Son Bingo night that I was in charge of at the elementary school. 3 days before the event we found out that our original photographer plans wasn't going to work out. This stressed me out at first, but then I started thinking.
I went home and toyed with and idea for souvenir photos instead of formal shots. I made a Bingo Night frame as a sample and we sold them for 3$ for a 4x6 and 5$ for a 5x7. One of the teachers took the pictures gave me the disk and I dropped them in the frames and they turned out just fine.
The bingo night turned out just fine too. Lots of people and we were pulling extra chairs and tables from every place we could find them. We probably had about 300 people and the food, snacks and prizes lasted until the end. This was our last big event of the year and I have to say it was a relief to have it over.

The next day was my talk. I woke up early while the rest of the family was sleeping in and went over it. The gist of it was maximizing your own potential as a child of God and not feeling less than by comparing to others.
I shared a story about when Jacob was a baby. We knew when Jacob was born that he would be short like his dad. We loved him as soon as he was born. What made it harder was that every time we went to the doctor he pointed out how low his growth was on the growth chart. The doctor always pointed out that he wasn’t even at the lowest level of normal. What frustrated me was we all knew that he would be low on the growth chart because the chart was made for average people. He would never measure up to the standards that the doctor had. It was impossible. His negative tone left me feeling deflated and not as able to just enjoy Jacob and appreciate him where he was.
Finally we went to a Little People of America Conference and I got a growth chart that was geared for people with Achondroplasia.  I gave it to my pediatrician and sure enough every appointment he commented that Jacob was right where he was supposed to me. The difference was having a growth chart that was right for him!
How many times do we put expectations on ourself that are unrealistic. Expecting yourself to be something that you will never be or comparing ourselves with others will only make you feel like a failure. The rest of my talk kind of expounded on this. I feel good about how it went and I got positive feedback but even if I hadn't I know that I tried my best.
Sunday was an open house to say goodbye to the Pendelton family. They are up in Utah now with a new job and a new life. But they won't be forgotten!
It was bittersweet but I'm happy for their family and it's a good thing for them.
This is our walking group. Even though Cindy's gone we'll keep walking. :)

It was fun because cousins were there as well as friends from the high school and the community. I heard a comment that this was the best stake activity they've had in a long time.
Saying good-bye to Jacob Pendelton.
Now we'll just have one more person to visit when we come up to Utah.

Since Monday was a holiday we had Jenae and Jolene come over Sunday night and spend the night for a cousin sleep over.

The foosball table got some use!

The next day I got them all donuts and took them to skyzone to jump.

Tahna then invited us to dinner that night. For not having any plans it ended up being a fun day off of school for them.
(You can barely see him but Taylor is in the mix too. His head in under Jenae's arm, he's hiding from my camera!!



That Friday Ashley had her much anticipated slumber party with Kate and Jenna. She got some fun presents..
they ate pizza and watched a movie...

and cleaned each other's feet with her new foot scrub and did foot massages.

Ashley loved it when it was her turn.
In the middle of the night it turned some.
Jenna went to bed early not feeling well. Ashley fell asleep early on Kate and left her feeling uncomfortable being the only one awake so she had her mom come get her.
Early in the morning Ashley was getting Jenna water, and cough drops and then more medicine. Ashley was a good host and even brought Jenna breakfast in bed.  Poor Jenna woke up miserable with a fever and a sore throat and not feeling well enough for any Saturday plans.
Then in the morning Ashley asked me "Where's Kate?" I guess she was asleep when she was picked up and when Ashley was roaming the house getting stuff for Jenna she was thinking Kate might be on the couch or the floor somewhere in the house and never found her. 
 "Great birthday mom" Ashley commented to me. Ha ha.
It was OK though we got Jenna dropped back off at home so she could rest and then had Kate come back over later and I took the girls to see Frozen and do a mall day. Ashley even got to buy a present for Jenna whose birthday was the next week. In the end Ashley had a good birthday.

This last Monday my washing machine started acting up. It had been leaving the clothes wet after a cycle and now it was giving me an SD warning which meant there were suds left in the machine. I was having to run the clothes through an extra spin cycle before I dried them and I knew something was wrong.
I did a plea on facebook for a good repair guy or any suggestions.
I got some advice to pull off the front panel and check the drain catch. I guess this is supposed to be done regularly and things can get caught in it and keep the washer from draining right.
Since I'm not strong enough to budge the washing machine at all I had to play contortionist to reach the screws in our dinky laundry room. I also had to play MacGyver and find a tool that would fit the bolt and then an extender to reach it...after lots of trys I got the cover off. 
After using pliers I wrenched the drain catch cover off because again I wasn't strong enough to twist it off.
(luckily I saw a picture of it on the internet)
Here was the drain catch and why the water wasn't draining!!
It was a nasty mess! My house smelled like a black swamp but it fixed the problem!!

This week I had the opportunity to do some jewelry making again including helping a ward member with some bridesmaids jewelry.
We are also planning for the upcoming Riverside Women's conference.
I used my photoshop again to make the invite.
At the women's conference we are assembling first aid kits for Jacob's eagle project.
As I am typing this we just received 11 boxes of supplies for it on the porch!
Jacob is very grateful for the friends and family that have donated money and supplies for his project. Thank you!

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