Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Good-bye June

I'm not sure where June went.

Does this mean my summer is half over?

With this knowledge the need to play intensified yesterday. With Marti, Braxton and Brooke we checked out the Lakeview Water Park in Nampa. The prices were great and the pool was even better. It was a beach entrance and had lots of different fountains, spray toys and a water slide. We played hard and had lots of fun. I could see us returning ... :)

Monday, June 29, 2009

More Reunion Pics

My previous post froze up so here are a few more pictures from our trip.

Waite Family Reunion

This Saturday, June 27th was my mom's family reunion in Cedar City, Utah. Due to grandpa's health we were unable to have the reunion at the cabin, we met at a park instead and still had a great time.

We left Vale Thursday afternoon and spent the night in Clearfield with grandma Karen and Kay. Friday morning we headed down to Cedar City. We met up with grandma and grandpa Waite at their hotel. When Matt and Dawn arrived we went to the Pizza Factory for dinner. (Our first time, great food!) Unfortunately we had to leave grandma and grandpa at their hotel while we headed up to the cabin for the night. Saturday after lunch we went back down the mountain to go swimming at Grandma's hotel. Then we headed over to the park for the reunion. After the reunion we said good-bye everyone and our family went back up to the cabin. Sunday morning we began the trek home.

Here are a few detailed highlights:
~ Austin and Spencer were jumping on Grandma's bed in their hotel room when their heads collided. Spencer walked away uninjured. Austin came away with a black eye.

~ After Emma's bath at Grandma's hotel I was combing through her hair and found a tick! Luckily it was just starting to go in and I was able to get it all out with tweezers. Sponge Bob was on so Emma was almost obliviously to the whole event. And no, I did not take a picture of it!

~ Ruth was not a fan of her car seat. She would go about one hour stretches and then scream until we pulled over. She was SO happy to get out of the car (as seen in the pictures taken on a break in Mountain Home.) Combine that with Emma throwing up Sunday morning we had a very, very slow trip home. It only took us 12 hours!!!

~ I love being at the cabin. It brings back lots of good memories and I love being able to create new ones with my kids. I only wish it was closer!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


In my quest to PLAY all summer long I'll be camping as much as possible. I LOVE everything about camping. Getting away from everything, camp fires, gorgeous night skies, sleeping snug in tents, nature hunts, dirt, exploring, and smores. I love that time is irrelevant, real life is on a hold and we come one with nature.

We did a quick 24 hour camp out Tuesday to Wednesday with Kylie and her girls Tyler and Sammy, plus Viola, Alisha and her girls Ellie and Addison. Austin and Spencer we very much out numbered (they didn't seem to care they were about as happy as me to be camping.)

After the Father's and Son camp out last weekend Kurt determined that our 2 person tent was no longer suitable for our family. So we purchased a 7 person tent, plus new air mattresses and sleeping bags. Combined with the father's day gifts we gave Kurt we have a new camping make-over.

Austin was very anxious to set up our new tent. Spencer was anxious for the new roasting sticks and mom was anxious for the new lantern. We were all pleased with our new gear. (The rechargeable air pump also proved to be quite fun!)

The company was fun, the kids loved playing together. Austin and Emma were the oldest but all the other kids were really close in age (Sammy and Ruth have the EXACT same birthday!) We bought shovels and other toys for dirt digging, and chalk for rock art. We went on nature walks both days and Austin even found a secret trail by our camp. Of course we ate lots of yummy food and the adults experimented with dutch over recipes (everything turned out so good! Since I'll be doing more camping/dutch oven cooking feel free to share your favorite dutch over recipes with me. Thanks!) Our camp was right next to a creek so lots of water play. Today Tyler really wanted to snorkel so she stripped down and put on her mask to put her face in the creek. It was pretty cute! Of course everyone else had to get naked, too. Austin was the only modest one.

Kylie left before us and when it was time to go Viola's car was dead. I jumped in mine to find someone who had jumper cables and my car was dead too. Awesome. Austin started crying because he was worried how we would ever get home. He wanted to say a prayer. He thanked Heavenly Father that someone would come and help us get home. Then it was time to take action. Alisha ran one direction and I ran the other to search for someone to help. I ran 2 miles before I found someone. They took me back to camp and both cars were already up and running. I'm thankful Heavenly Father hears and answers prayers and that my 6 year old knows that.

A few favorite quotes:

Austin was reading us books before bed and after 3 stories he said, "I need to stop. My vocal cords are tired."

Spencer still had his footy jammies on during our walk, "I'm Jammie Man!"

Our New Tent

Spencer enjoying the creek

Emma's smore perfection

Ruth loves marshmallows too!

Awesome big brother

Nature walk

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Girls Camp

This week was Girls Camp. We have a new Stake YW presidency and they made a lot of changes this year. One of the major ones was shortening the length of camp. It was only 3 days (Tuesday - Thursday.) It was nice for a young mom like me so I could get back to my family sooner but too short for the girls and leaders (in my opinion.)

By having Ruth up at camp with me last year it helped me not miss the rest of my kids as much. I didn't realize this fact until I was at camp Tuesday. I didn't think I was going to make it for the duration of Girls Camp! I missed those cute rascals of mine!

Our Ward camp directors were wonderful. They took care of everything and made it possible for my sole purpose to bond and play with the girls. PERFECT. That's exactly how it should be. BIG shout out to them, THANKS a million!

We had a few grumpy girls but we got them involved and they forgot their mission to be grumpy and hate camp. It was a very successful year of Girls Camp. I LOVE MY GIRLS!

Saturday, June 20, 2009


Being spontaneous isn't something that happens very often after you have kids. It's a bit harder to pick up and go on a whim. I still love to be spontaneous when ever I can.

Last week I had a fun opportunity. My grandma Karen was up in McCall, Idaho. They had booked their time share for the entire week and everything was paid for. Unfortunately they had to leave early. They hated to leave it open since they had already paid for it. Since I'm only 2 hours from McCall they gave me a call and asked if I wanted to use it. It would basically just cost the gas money to get there (since I could bring my own food to meals.) How could I turn down such a great and almost free get-away? Of course I couldn't! So I made plans to go Thursday through Saturday. Kurt met us up there Friday night.

Thursday we spent the day at Ponderosa State Park right there in McCall. We played on lake's sandy shore (even though it was a chilly morning of 54 degrees.) When for hikes on their great trails and swam. We had a wonderful time! Saturday morning we did some more hiking with Kurt. This is why I love summer ~ a great opportunity to get away came up and we took it! Thanks Grandma for helping us be spontaneous.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Swim Lessons

The kids had private swim lesson this week. Each of them had their own teacher for 1/2 hour all week. I'm happy with how they all did. It was a positive experience.


Austin had a different teacher the second day. I'm not sure why but I was happy with the change. He did well and is comfortable putting his face in the water. We might do another session of private lessons in July because of his age and the need to have his skill.

Emma Lynn

Emma's teacher was Mary and they were so cute together! Mary's personality was perfect for Emma. She has loved every minute of swim lessons. I didn't once have to convince or sweet talk her into going. What a blessing! Mary and Emma would both just smile the whole time, it was pretty cute!


I did have to convince Spencer on the first day to get into the big pool. He just wanted to swim in the kiddie pool by himself. But he got in and it hasn't been an issue again. His teacher, Shelby has been great with him. He is the only one who calls out for me to, "Look at me mom!"

Ruth and I had fun on the side watching. After the first day we brought her swimming suit and she liked that much better!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009


aka Mom's Awesome Summer School

Each week we are studying a different topic and we cover the areas of math, reading, science and art. Each child makes a project for their book report at the end of the week.

MASS Week 1 was about FROGS. Its our way to keep learning and have some fun too. I'm excited for the weeks where we'll need to do field trips to further our learning. I'm sure we'll keep you up-dated on our MASS (and no we are not Catholic! ;)

Austin reporting on "Big Wide Mouth Frog"

Emma Lynn with her finger puppets for "5 Little Speckled Frogs."

Monday, June 8, 2009

Anniversary Post

Exactly one year ago I joined the blogging community. And my life as never been the same. Okay. Maybe it hasn't been that dramatic but it sure has been a fun way to keep in touch and record our life.

I'm even posting about the very same event, how cool is that?!?! The Hershey Track Meet.

The Girls warming up

We still didn't convince Emma Lynn to participate but Ruth represented the females of the family and ran her first 50 meter race. It was SOOOO precious!!! She even came in third (there were only 3 that participated but minor detail.)

Spencer surprised us all and refused to run. He did the throw and standing long jump just fine. Warmed up like a pro and then it came time to race. Nada. He just stood there at the starting line with his head down while everyone raced away. Kurt convinced him to try again for the 4 year old race. He complied. He walked, scowling with every single step. Needless to say he only got a participation award. As we were driving home I asked him what happened.

"I lost it. I just lost it."
"What did you lose, Spencer?"
"My Super Dash, Hyper Blast. It was gone at the race."
He says that phase every time right before he runs. I explained to him that you can't lose it. You always have it in you. You just have to GO!
He did get 4th in standing long jump and 5th in the throw.

Austin was positive and had fun. He got 5th in the 50 meter, 2nd in standing long jump, 5th in the throw and a participation award for the 200 meters. I love watching Austin run. Just about the time he started the 200 meters it started to rain, a lot. So we didn't stick around for the 400.

This has become a great family tradition.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

First Week of Summer

The first week of summer completed. Full of all the important summer things.

~ Austin started t-ball and had games Monday and Wednesday night. I am NOT his coach this year and it is a MUCH better experience for all! He has made progress and we'll continue to practice with him to improve his skills and confidence.

~Swimming is a huge part of summer and since we were house bound this week (more about that later) we inflated our kiddie pool, busted out the slip n' slide and turned the sprinklers on full blast. Any kind of water play is perfect! Austin and Emma both got bad sun burns on Tuesday. I think we'll have to up the power of our sun lotion!

~ Otter pops are back in the freezer and the main staple snacks (plus a few trips to DQ for the famous Dilly Bars ;)

~ It also means warmer days and basement bonding. The paranoia to use the swamp cooler runs ramped. (I have this fear that mold is growing in the walls and thus one of the causes of all our respiratory sicknesses.) We've been sleeping any cool spot we can find. Musical beds anyone?

~ And don't forget allergy season for the wimps. I'm back to glasses full time until I can get the blisters on my eyes to stop happening. Kurt and I are such a cute pair.

~ My roses are in full bloom. I have about 20 plants each a different color and variety. It is so gorgeous, and smells so sweet.

(these pictures are courtesy of Emma Lynn photography)

~ This is a new one but I'm loving it...piano with Austin. He is very interested right now and we're running with it. We sit down and practice 5-10 minutes every day. He has a good sense of rhythm. Next week we're going to concentrate on reading with Emma, she's ready!

~ We ate hot dogs 3 times this week and 3 different BBQ's or roasts (with an actual bon fire.) Are we anxious or what?!!! :)

~ Read-a-loud books. Okay we do this all year round but we can read so many more during the summer. Currently we are reading "Super Fudge" by Judy Blume.

~ The nights have been late and the arousal in the morning even later. And mom doesn't care because no one has school!!! You gotta love summer.

This week I watched our neighbor girls (Amy and Hailey Trotter) all week. Amy and Austin were in the same class and quickly became good friends. Their parents don't want me going anywhere with them. That was really hard! We all know that I am use to going and doing. It was just weird to be restricted in my own home. But this was the only week all summer that I'll have them all week. Emma LOVED having the older girls around. And once we got into the groove they all played so well and had so much fun together.

Swim lessons start on Monday for the oldest three and then Girls Camp the week after that, followed by the Waite reunion at the end of the month. How quickly the month is booked. But there are so many moments just waiting for playing and reading and roasting and swimming and eating and camping and all the things that define the glory of summer.

The world is a stage

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