Monday, January 28, 2008

Is It Spring Yet?

It is the end of January and I am FREEZING!!! Today we had a 2 hour delay for school because the roads were so icy. Sunday we had about 2 1/2 inches of snow to clean up before we could get the cars out to go to church.

The first year we lived here, our bishop canceled church one Sunday because there was too much snow. Now we have a bishop who grew up in Alaska and says there is not much snow out there and the pioneers still went to church why can't we!? I do agree with him. Just because there is snow on the ground does not mean that church or school should be canceled or delayed. I grew up in Montana where the buses didn't make it into town if it was 25 degrees below zero, and school was not canceled unless it was 55 degrees below zero.

However, I do see now why they make those changes here. The city is not really prepared for large amounts of snow. The roads don't get plowed and if they do it is only the major streets. I do believe in safety first.

And this year I must be getting old. I am so cold!!! And I don't want to turn up the heater because I don't want to pay the bill. We try to keep it at 68, but sometimes that does not seem warm enough. So I sit on the couch with a blanket and my kids sitting around me, hoping to stay warm.

I am ready for warm sun and sitting on the beach at Sand Harbor, trying not to get a sunburn.


In this world where some people surf the net to do harm, I have been asked to add a disclaimer.

**This blog is about actual people. Should you see any similarity to someone you know, it may be true. The names are usually changed to protect the innocent but there can be slips and they are not always innocent. To those that love us and mean us no harm, you know who we are and who belongs to what name. We love you, too.**

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Fun Trip

Our trip to Disneyland was a blast!! I think our favorite ride is Buzz Lightyear Astro Blaster. During the ride, you are able to use a blaster and shoot targets. We had a good time trying to out shoot each other. At one point in the ride our picture is taken. Then at the end of the ride, you can email it to yourself. We think this option should be on all the rides that take your picture. I haven't figured out where the camera is yet, so most of us have our faces blocked.

Mom and KeeKee -

She is still to short to see over the bar.

Ahlah and NeeNee

Dad and Ohtee - For some reason their scores did not show on the picture. Which is good because dad brags about how his is so high.


Our family just returned from a quick weekend to Disneyland. We had a great time and are exhausted. This trip got me thinking about memorable vacations I had growing up and wondering if I am creating these same memories with my children.
Three trips that stand out in my mind. (My memories of what happened and what really happened may be challenged by other members of my family which occurs often when reminiscing.)
1) Our trip to Oregon where we camped for two weeks down the Oregon and California coast.
I am not sure what makes this trip stand out for me. I remember it being a long trip. I remember one campground we stayed at on a Sunday. I think it stands out to me because my dad went fishing that day. We were in a very wooded sandy area with a dune blocking the ocean. We just had to make a short walk to the ocean. I also remember going to the Redwood forest during this trip and expecting to see Star Wars people on speeder bikes racing through the forest. I also remember the clock my parents bought. It was made out of a slice of redwood tree. That clock hung on our wall for many years. I am not sure if it is hanging in their house still. I will have to check the next time I am there.
2) Our trip with the Wrights to South Dakota.
I don't remember a whole lot about this trip either. I am not sure how old we were. I was over 10 and under 13. We drove to South Dakota through Colorado and went to the Denver Mint. I would like to do that with my children. We then went to Mount Rushmore. The thing I remember most about the trip is the ride home. Somewhere along the way, the axle on the trailer broke and we didn't make it home in time for school after the spring break. I remember the school making such a big deal about missing 6 days of school and not only 5. Now I remember I was 12. This was the first year I was going to be able to go on the Young Women Trip to Salt Lake City. I was going to have to miss another day of school. I remember breaking down in tears when I had to ask Mr. Balber to let me go even though it would mean I would have missed 7 days of school that quarter. We always had problems with the school when it was vacation time.
We lived in West Yellowstone, MT. It is a tourist town. Our parents managed a motel, so we had to be there when other people were on vacation. We always seemed to take a trip in October and April when the motel was slow. I remember Mrs. C did not like this because that meant she had to get our work ready so we could take it with us. I had her two years in a row for 4th and 5th grade. Then Julie had her for 4th grade. So she had to deal with our dad for three years. I don't think she liked him very much.
3) A random trip to Porterville, CA to see Grandma Pat.
This trip happened after we moved to California. Grandpa Alger was living with us. We went down to see his mother, Grandma Pat. I don't remember if it was on the way to see her or if it was on the way home, but the van broke down. If you think about a tow truck, there are 3 seat belts, the driver, middle passenger, and side passenger. Well, there were 7 of us in the van. First the tow truck driver didn't want to take us. He wanted to take our dad and send him back with a rental car or some other way to come get us. It was dark on a two lane highway. That was not going to work. So I remember the driver telling us to lay down a low as we could, even grandpa who was in the front passenger seat. Then he pulled the van up onto the flat bed of the truck. We then rode to the station in the van on the truck. I am sure that was a huge no no. What a memory.
What is your favorite vacation memory?

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

"Mom I have nothing to wear!"

Last year, February, we had a problem with our dryer and needed to get a new one. We had already been having problems with our washer, so it was time to upgrade and get new ones. It was kind of sad to part with the first thing we bought as a married couple. It was even the very first check I ever wrote for more than $1000. They lasted 1o years. When looking at what style we wanted, the large capacity was the winner. The idea of washing everything at one time was great. And I have had great joy from larger loads at one time, making laundry less of a chore than it used to be. Now if it would fold itself, I would be a very happy person.
Now as far as I know, everyday we get up , we go to the bathroom, and then put some clothes on. And this cycle has proven to repeat itself every 24 hours. (with the exception of holidays, weekends and sick days.) So why is it that just about every morning one child, including the dad, will tell me 10 minutes before it is time to leave the house that they have nothing to wear.

As you can see, there are plenty of clothes washed. Apparently they are not wearable until they are folded. (Which I should be doing right now, but I am writing instead.) These cloths are clean and not even all the clothes this family owns. So where could the clothes be mysteriously disappearing? I decided that I need to do some investigating. This is what I found.

The Girls Room: 2 girls Ahla & NeeNee

Not too bad, but where are their clothes?

Not in the dirty clothes bin! These are shoes.

The girls have me stumped, so I will move onto the other two's room.

Ohtee & KeeKee

They are little so I didn't expect to find too many clothes here. Ohtee is actually pretty good at picking up the clothes to get them washed. He has a healthy respect for dad and they work together on it. Now what I found in this room was a bit bothersome.

These are supposedly the clean clothes.

I realize this is a time where I need to pick my battles. If this is the worst these children ever get, I will not have much to complain about. I am sure that me being the parent has much to do with how they take care of their clothes. I could teach them better. I know that as a child I was not the best at keeping things picked as so very well explained by my sister (The Orange Oracle: Go Clean Your Room - Instant Hysteria, December 2007). She described our room exactly how I remember it!

As for now, I am charged with making sure we all have enough clothes for our trip this weekend to Disneyland. Packing is not great, but at least for a few days, they will have enough clothes to wear each day.

Monday, January 14, 2008


After starting this last night rather late in the evening, I dreamt about it! I woke up this morning with the feeling that I hadn't done my homework and it was due in 10 minutes. That is not a great feeling. I am sure it didn't help that my husband is out of town so I stayed up way to late watching TV. I find it hard to fall asleep when he is not here. I thought for sure if I laid in the bed with the TV on, I would just drift off and wake up to have to turn the TV off. No such luck. And so, my tired brain worked all night on what I would post next. I never would have guessed that I would choose to write an essay for pleasure. I enjoyed my Sophomore and Senior Year of English in high school, but I think that is only because I liked the teacher. She was very project oriented which made getting a passing grade much easier. If my writing was not good enough, the project that went with it seemed to make up the difference. Yet as I write, all those grammar, sentence structure, and punctuations rules float through my head and make me self conscious that she will read this, grade it, and send it back with a bad grade. This is the Internet, who is watching for that? And yea for spell check!

So I have decided that it is not too late to talk about the Christmas break and will fill you in on all that went on during the two weeks the kids were out of school. Actually, not much happened. At least we thought not much happened until it was time to go back to school.

We had a very nice start to the break when Dad's parents came for the weekend before Christmas. With all the kids scattered about, they tried to spend some of the holiday with each of us. While they were here we got the good news that Dad's brother was promoted and will be moving to Montana. I am excited to go visit them and drive through West Yellowstone, where I consider myself to have grown up there. (Even though I was 8 when we moved there and 13 when we moved away.) Great news for them. This will be a great opportunity, and a huge change from the San Jose Bay Area.

B & L are always great help when they are here. They brought the Rainbow (super - duper vacuum) and cleaned the upstairs. Even more of the bathroom was finished with parents there as motivators. (Before and after pics will come soon)

Then we pretty much had a low key rest of the week. Christmas day came and we all got the things on our lists. We had lots of fun with the new keyboard, video games, light saber, Mr. Potato Head and Optomash Prime.

We tried to get a trip in to Southern California, but The Higher Ups went out of town which left Dad holding the fort. I soon stopped pouting and hung out with the kids. Then Saturday morning, 12/29, we were cleaning up from Christmas and Ohtee stubbed his big toe. He could have easily needed stitches, but it was cut in a way we could put a band-aid on it and leave it to heal. (He has many scars for only 5 years of life.) And so the day went on, and the house actually was clean by the end. Then around 7:45 pm that night, NeeNee got her finger caught in the sofa recliner latch. The pinch startled her, so she pulled her finger and it ripped. She had a nice "mouth" on her right middle finger. On the soft fleshy side of her finger. This was not a cut we could bandage and let heal. So, NeeNee and I went to the ER at 8pm on a Saturday evening - New Years weekend. I was not looking forward to the hours we would most likely have to wait. As quickly as we were getting shoes and coats on, Ahla, my big helper, was getting books, crayons, paper, and snacks together for us to take with us for our anticipated long wait. Well, we lucked out, our insurance chosen ER had a FAST TRACK where we were able to go because we "just needed stitches". YEA!!!!! We were only there 2 hours. That may seem long, but we were ready to be there into the night. NeeNee said the worst part of the whole thing was not the cut itself, but the needle and poking to numb the finger before the DR could stitch it. She had a nice purple ring around her finger for a few days after. We went home, she went to bed and all seemed right with the world again. Well, to be on the safe side of infection, the ER DR gave her a prescription antibiotic since hands are really dirty. We gave her the meds as directed without any incident. Then two days after she had finished her treatment, she got a rash of little red bumps all over her upper torso. I was worried that she was allergic to the Tide I had started using for the laundry. But it was not anywhere else on her body. The next morning, she was covered where her cloths were and the rash was now crawling up her neck and face. At least we were already on our way back to the DR to get the stitches removed. When the DR looked at her, she said "this looks like a drug reaction". They gave her Benadryl and sent us on our way. That night the rash was getting worse. This could not be from the drugs they gave her now three days gone. We went to our Family DR the next morning. They didn't think it was from the drugs, but wanted to know what had caused it. All agreed it was an allergic reaction to something. So NeeNee will be going to and Allergist to find out what the deal is. She was sad to have this all happen at the end of the break. She was ready to get back to school to see her friends, but the allergy meds they gave her made her drowsy. The Family DR gave her a stronger prescription allergy med that cleared everything up in a day and a half. We were glad to see the spots go away.

Now everyone is healthy, except for the winter coughs, and we will be going to Disneyland this weekend. I am looking forward to warmer days and maybe a little more sun.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

The Start of Something New

After reading my friends' and family's blogs, I have decide that I will have a go. Now if only I was confident enough to actually write about something someone else might want to read. So a brief history might break the ice. I am married. 12 years this year, thus the inspiration for the title of this blog. We have 4 children and they are busy, opinionated, and bossy. The oldest is 10, next is 7, then 5, and finally 2. As I have been informed so many times, they are like me when it comes to these characteristics. And so I have no ability of denying they belong to me. However, I am also told they look their father's side of the family more than mine, with the exception of the last. Finally I have one that looks like me.

They keep me very busy along with my church calling and my husband starting his own business. That could be a whole session of its own. As for now, this will be my maiden post. Hopefully I can become more clever.