Thursday, July 7, 2011

Monday, June 20, 2011

I love my kids so much! They are so cute! Today was the first day of 4 weeks of swim lessons. Of course, they were both so excited! As we walked into the Clearfield Aquatic Center, Sam said, "Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!" which actually sounds kind of like "Chank Choo." He was pretty upset that we couldn't get directly into the pool and had to wait on the bleachers for instructions. He figured out that we'd have to wait. Aubrey was called to her class, and then Sam and I went to join the mommy-and-me class. If Sam could say, "FINALLY!" he would've! But again, he had to sit on the side of the pool until we were instructed to get in. He kicked the water and did everything he could to get in! Once we were in, he knew what to do; he kicked and splashed and loved it! He did well with everything except floating. i'm going to see if he does better with a swim cap on. Aubrey also did well, and was proud of the ice-cream-scoop arms she learned. Both kids wanted to stay for more, but I didn't think we could. Apparently, we can for free! I'm excited to pack a lunch on another day, and we'll just hang out at the pool all day!
We came home and got some things done while Sam took a nap.
Aubrey filled up another reading chart over the weekend, so for FHE we went to the Classic Fun Center. We let the kids play on the pirates cove climbing area and the bouncy house stuff. Holy Cow did the kids go crazy! They ran and bounced and slid all around, non-stop the whole time! It was let-loose-and-be-a-KID time! Sometimes they chose to play on different things, but it was really cute when Sam and Aubrey played together. Aubrey took him all around the pirates cove, and he was so good to follow her instructions. Both of them are so adventurous, and willing to try new things; I just LOVE that about them!
Yesturday was Father's day. Seth has had another LONG week at work. He worked 33 hours straight from Monday morning through Tues evening then continued to work a regular week from there. I tried to let him relax when I could, but the kids wanted to be with him, and he had to try out his Father's day present! We gave him his present on Saturday: battery-opperated trimmer and blower. He mowed the lawn and trimmed a bit. The blower was light enough that Aubrey did that part. :) On Sunday we slept in and missed Sacrament meeting and went to Mom's house for dinner. Aubrey sang, "Daddy's Homecoming" to Seth. She also have him lots of artwork.
This past week I practiced the piano a lot. Clarissa Lunt and I had been working on a viola piece that she wanted to perform. We put together a recital which ended up including Clarissa (viola), her friend, Ben (french horn), Gabriel Gutierrez (flute), and Liz Griggs piano. Gabriel is an aquatance of mine and Liz is my step-cousin. We didn't have a big crowd, but it was still nice just to play for each other and family; it's always good to perform as much as you can. I got in touch with Ben (french horn) last Monday, and worked hard all week to have his piece ready on Saturday.
I was pretty happy with how well it turned out. A couple hours after that recital, we went to the concert on the lawn at the Graffs house. This is our neighborhood talent show that is SO FUN! Aubrey sang in the neighborhood choir that Kimberly Graff organized. She sang, "I Won't Grow Up!" From the Peter Pan play. I played "Maple Leaf Rag" and Aubrey ended up dancing around on the "stage" as I played.
Last weekend, Sheila took Aubrey and I to the Peter Pan play at Weber State. It was put on by a community group with lots of kids and was so well done! Aubrey and I loved it! It turned out to be a great coincidence that Aubrey was learning a song from that play for the Concert on the Lawn. That was fun for her to see it perfomed live in the play. It was cute to have her whisper comments and questions to me during the play. For example, "Mom, they are not really flying..." or "Is Captain Hook a real bad guy? I mean that man on stage; is he really a bad guy?" Or when she'd notice the stage crew changing scenes and things. She really got into the story too.
A couple weeks ago, Aubrey had her dance recital. We had a dress rehearsal the day before. Her friend, Alana Bullock, dances at the same studio. Aubrey loved watching Alaina dance. After the rehearsal Aubrey said, "Mom, I wish I could dance like Alaina." She also went up to her and said, "I watched you do a good job!" Aubrey had so much fun performing the next night; no stage fright for this girl! She rocked out! Then she waited patiently through a long recital to finally watch Alaina dance, and had fun cheering for her friend! At the end of the show, the dancers went back on the stage to just dance around to music for a final number. This was sprung on Aubrey the last minute; I told her what to do, she said, "Okay," and off she went! She got on stage, and had a blast! She jumped around and twirled and bounced and just went with the music! It was SO awesome!
I hope Aubrey is always like this. Something that I just LOVE about my daughter is that she trusts me and is willing to follow my instructions. There's just no fear. When it comes to giving a talk, singing, dancing, making friends, riding a bike, taking on a new challenge or handling a new situation, I know that if I give her concrete instructions, she will trust and follow them. She turns out successful, and then we celebrate! I can't wait to see what she accomplishes; I just know that she has amazing potential. I pray all the time that Heavenly Father will guide me to help her find and reach that incredible potential that is in her. It's exciting for me, and also such a huge responsibility. She is amazing.
Something that I think a lot about is how to help my kids reach their potential. Is it better to try a lot of different things or pick one or two things and be REALLY good at just those things. At what point do a push and when do I back off? Am I being open to all their talents or are my own biases limiting them? Anyway, I'm sure it will be an issue I constanly pray about. For now, it's bed time. Good night.

Friday, June 3, 2011

These last few months I've been feeling pretty blue. I thought it might be due to the weather or maybe a deficiency of some kind. I went to a chiropractor, did blood tests by a family doctor, and went down to St. George to see Graff. They all had ideas that they thought would be helpful, but I wasn't so sure. Graff was the most helpful. THese last couple days I've complained to Seth about being a stay-at-home mom. I know it's what I'm supposed to do, but I'm just bored. I was doing the dishes last night and was thinking and praying about it. I felt embarrassed that I turned to facebook for answers. The thought came to be that I need to be writing down what I'm doing. Journaling would help me appreciate this time and feel more gratitude for what I have.
Yesturday, I got up at 6:30 and did my resistance-band workout video. I like to do meditation at the end of my workout, but it's about that time that Aubrey and Sam wake up. Aubrey goes to the kitchen table where we have our notebook laptop. She knows how to get to Netflix and start a video on her own. Her favorite latest show is "Wonder Pets". She likes any show where they save animals. So I went and got Sam, got him some milk, and put him next to Aubrey so they could watch the show together while I showered. When I came back they smiled at me with mouths full of graham crackers they had helped themselves to. They love being independent. Aubrey proudly announced that she ate a healthy banana before eating the graham crackers. We finished up breakfast.
Next I think I had them play together while I played poppit on the computer. I should probably get addicted to journaling instead of poppit, but I kept beating my score, and popping ballooons is just so fun!...
Anyway, at some point, we practiced some trial lessons on the k12 website. They are actually really fun and Aubrey liked it. We learned about life at a pond, and a little about the Wright bothers and made a colorful paper airplane. I think Aubrey is going to like science the best. She loves learning about animals, her body, planets, etc. The Wright brothers lesson was fun, but something tells me that was the most fun history lesson. I think this year, I want to use history lessons from my Kimber book. I didn't get good reviews from other partents on the music corriculum, so I'm trying to decide what to do for Aubrey as far as music lessons. She loves to color and do art projects, but I think we'll still do things like that without the art curriculum or join other families for those activities. So, when k12 calls me to choose the 3 subjects for Aubrey's school, I'll choose math, language arts and science. Then she'll be in gymnastics, soccer, and music lessons. Dance crossed my mind to, but she's not that into it right now, and we probably can't afford that much.
We had lunch, and went outside. Sam pushed around a stroller. Aubrey was determined to ride her two-wheeled-no-training-wheels bike all by herself. I went to help her, and she said, "NO Mom! I can do it myself!" She really did learn how to go by herself, at least, she kept getting betther at it! She would ride around the col-di-sac, and then stop on the grass where she can slow down and get off safely. She really has amazed me with how quickly she picked up riding without training wheels.
Our next door neighbor, Jeffrey, came to play too. The kids played in the back yard, went down slides and swang. Sam really likes to climb the ladders, go down the slide, and get pushed in the swing. Aubrey used the big pieces of bark coming off the old, dead tree to build a sandbox. I also ended up watching Esme for a little bit too. They also played inside for a little bit, and I played poppit some more. We had dinner, seth went to soccer games. Then we had reading time and put the kids to bed. Aubrey really is getting good at reading; she certainly has room to grow, but she's making steady progress as long as we keep working on it. She did earn her trip to Chuck-E-Cheese, and now she's working on a trip to a bouncy house.
Aubrey has been difficult lately as far as being really argumentative. It doesn't matter what I ask her to do, she'll give me some excuse not to do it. She has her moments of being helpful, but most the time, it's just talking back. Today, I also took some time to set up a video I recorded of her dance class, so she could practice her routine that she is performing soon. At first, she just whined and complained that I was making her do this! "What?!" I thought, "This was supposed to be something really fun?!" It got so bad that I put her in a time where she had to stay there until she was ready to dance with a good attitude. Good greif! I need to figure out how to deal with the whiny, talk-back crap.
Sam and Aubre are such different kids. The other day we went to the castle park. Aubrey explored every inch of that park, and played all over it! If she made a new friend, then she might stay in one area (the sand box tends to be her favorite) for a while. I tried to show Sam around the park; I guess I thought he'd like to see his options, or I was chasing down Aubrey or something. I guess I like to see it all too. But Sam didn't like that. He just got to the first place that seemed like a fun place to play, and he wanted to stay there. He was angry when I would try to take him to a different fun place to play; he already had a fun place to play and didn't want to leave the one he had.
Even comparing them as toddlers is so different! Aubrey had to dump out EVERYTHING! Every toy, every box every area of the house needed to be explored and emptied. She is STILL that way! Sam just needs a car. If a car isn't around, he'll use his finger or something else handy to make car sounds and glide around the floor or other surface. That's it. If he thinks you're trying to take his car, he'll yell, "That's MY!" and put on his angry face.
I think the kids are awake now. Aubrey has a play-date with Emma Prinster this morning, and she needs to clean up her messes before she can go. Time to start another day!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Some Updates

Aubrey had the Pledge of Allegiance memorized within the first week of preschool this year. We are still working on getting her to say "liberty" instead of "liverty" though! At the beginning of this preschool year, she also spent a lot of time trying to whistle and snap.
Aubrey's reading skills are always getting better. She definitely is more motivated when she has a chart to fill up with stickers. Right now she's working on earning a Chuch-E-Cheese trip. Having a goal to reach has really propelled her sight-words, sounding-out, and just plain motivation!
We are also reading the scriptures every evening at family prayer time. Seth and I each read two versus and Aubrey reads one. She is really good and "And it came to pass" and guessing what comes after that. She can read a lot of the scripture words! Of course, we pick the easiest versus for her to read. She has also been challenged by the Primary to read scriptures. Right after that challenge, we came home and she got her scriptures. I could hear her in her room reading them out loud to herself. She did her best to sound scriptural and talked about Nephi and Jerusalem and getting brass plates! It helped that I showed her the Living Scriptures movie, but it was SO CUTE!!
Aubrey loves her ballet class. She just got her costume yesterday. She told us she dances to a song where "the bird rocks in the treetops all day long." Us: "You mean 'Rockin Robin'?" Aubrey: "Yeah! That one!" She's excited to do her show.
She doesn't seem to like her tumbling class. They have to stand in line and wait their turn a lot. She says they take too long. She wants to go back to lil' flippers. Unfortunately, I've already paid for the rest of the year there cuz it was a discount to do preschool, ballet, and tumbling all at the same place. Oh well.
Aubrey likes doing the K12 math book that we got from the homeschooling convention last year. She's really on track as if she went to kindergarten this year. She should be ready, academically, for first grade in the fall. She is getting better at counting to 100. Aubrey is really good at counting by 10's to 100, and is getting better at counting by 5's.
She also tells me that she already knows how to play all the instruments because she watches Little Einsteins. She also knows everything about animals because she watches Diego. I tell her it is so important to be smart. She tries so hard to do what is right, to be helpful, and be smart. I'm so proud of her!

Hike to Igloos

Last night for FHE, we went on a hike on a nearby trail. Mel, Ben, and Doug Graff took us up the mountain a little ways to where the Fox Creek scout's igloos were. We got all bundled up in warm clothes. Sam was in his blue pooffy snow-suit, and was squished into the baby-carrier in front of Dad. It was so cute! On the way up, we could look out across Davis County. We had Perfect timing to see a gorgeous sunset! The Great Salt Lake was like a glass mirror, reflecting the mountains, and the colors of the Sunset. SO BEAUTIFUL!!! We continued the hike up. Aubrey rode on Mel's shoulders most of the way.
We went off trail a bit, and found one igloo that had already been caved in and melted. We went up a little steeper and found two more igloos. Aubrey was having a great time! She was really tough, and hiked up the steep part. Okay, I ended up carrying her for part of it, but I was still proud of her for toughing it out for a while. She thought the igloos were so cool! Sam was not having very much fun at this point. I think he was sick of the baby-carrier, and freaked out by the igloos! We didn't stay too long.
Seth went ahead of us and got Sam back down the mountain. I guess Sam was happy on the hike down until Seth got to the parking lot and slipped on some ice. Seth was able to twist and fall on his backpack instead of Sam, but Sam got scared still. Poor kid; he didn't like the whole trip that much.
Aubrey, on the other hand, was having a great time! She sad on a snowboard with Doug, and rode down with him most of the way! Her job was to hold the flashlight as they rode down, as it was dark by this time. She also got a shoulder ride from Doug part of the way too. Aubrey is always up for an adventure! I love that about her!
It was good exercise and family outing.

Friday, January 28, 2011

A Wonderful Day!

Yesturday, the kids were being so good I had to write the day down, so I could bottle it up and save it for a bad day!
I went running in the morning, did some crunches and stretched. Then Aubrey wanted to cuddle with me. Okay! We laid in bed while she told me about her dreams. She had some good dreams, but she is also starting to have nightmares. After a while, we got up and I took a shower. Sam was crying when I got out, so I got him from his crib. His diaper was over-flowing with urine plus there were poops. Poor kid! I got him cleaned up, and put him in my bed while I got dressed. He snuggled in my blankets and pillows, and he looked so comfortable, I decided to join him. We cuddled for a little while. In the mean time, Aubrey set the table, fed the fish and swept the floor! Wow! We've been working on filling a jar with beans for "going the extra mile." I gave Aubrey a bunch of beans in the jar!
We had breakfast and we were getting ready to go to the Odgen Nature Center with some friends. Our friends called and pushed back our play-date until 10:30. Aubrey was getting bored with the unexpected extra time. I said, "Do you want to play with your toys?" "No." "Do you want to read?" "No." "Do you want to do some math?" "Yeah! math!" So she got out her kindergarten math book, and started on her pages. I was helping her a bit, but Debbie called. Aubrey ended up doing about five pages by herself while I talked to Debbie.
Then we went to the Ogden Nature Center with our new friends Tina and her daughter Eliza. It was a beautiful day; cool and crisp but the sun was out and it felt nice. The kids stayed with us, and we had a nice visit as we strolled around. They were so good, I never got upset about anything or even had to remind them to stay with us or anything. We saw about four deer. Two of them were pretty close to us. The kids thought it was fun to watch one of them prance away. They had big antlers too! It was pretty cool. They also liked the birds there.
We got in the car and went to Red Robin for lunch. It was more than I wanted to spend, but Tina was pregnant, so I let her pick the restaurant. Oh well. The kids ate their food and were good there too.
When we got back, Heather came over. She's looking really good for her first Figure Competition coming up! THe kids played for a bit and then they had to go. It was about 4pm and we'd had a big day. Sam went down for a nap, and Aubrey wanted to do more math! I helped her with it for a bit, and then we made dinner. I put the notebook on the counter with speakers and hulu'd "the biggest loser" while we made and ate omelets. Then Seth came home and I made omelets for him and Sam. Then Seth went to his soccer game, and I finished feeding Sam. Then Aubrey read a BOB scholastic level 4 book "The Swimmers" to me as I cleaned the kitchen. This is only the second time that she read aloud while I did something instead of me sitting with her. When words were too big, like "called", she covered up the "ed" sounded out "call" and then finished sounding out "called." I've done that for her before, but I'd never her seen her do that on her own! She got mostly through her book before she was tired of it; I was so proud of her, I didn't mind that she didn't feel like doing the last page or two. She helped me stir brownies, and then went to play with Sam while I finished cleaning the kitchen. I got the kids in their pj's, and then read books to them at the kitchen table while they ate their brownies. Then they brushed their teeth. Seth came home, we said prayers and they went to bed. Aubrey cried, because she was scared. We left the hall light on and cracked her door open, we said another prayer and sang a song. She was better.
Seth did some work on his computer while I made a weekly meal plan. Seth had created this amazing chart to help him save time on future equations at work (or something like that). If we printed it off, it would be about a 3'x5' poster! He wants to add to it too! He's so amazing! I'm so proud of him!
We visited for a bit, and went to bed.
And that was my wonderful day!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Oh boy how I need to do this more often. Our pictures probably tell a lot of our comings and goings, so here's a few things on my mind right now.
Today, Sam took a chair to the fish tank and climbed up to see the fish better. I think that will be okay, it's just that he opens the lid and plays in the water that's NOT okay. Somehow he also ended up at the top of the piano and was hanging onto the banister when I came in the room--Scary! He's trying to say more words, and it's funny to watch him think about the mechanics of what he's trying to say; his lips really do the motions of the word! We have the vowels on the refrigerator, and he's starting to learn those, because he can say them too.
Aubrey continues to amaze me. I realize that she loves charts and setting goals that she can see her progress. I made another reading chart, and that always kicks her reading in gear, and gets her more motivated to read to me. We were getting a little stuck on the sight words in set 4 of the BOB books, so we've turned a little focus on sight words now. I'm still not sure how I'm doing this. She has flash cards, and works on them a little each night. a lot of the words aren't consistent, meaning she'll get them right away one night, and have to sound it out the next night. She's getting it though. there's about 30 words that she's pretty good with.
Aubrey has been starting to get an attitude lately. She tries to tell me when I'm doing something wrong, plays the victim when she's in trouble, and is starting to get bossy. It's not too bad, and is a new problem. But of course, it is best to stop it in it's tracks! At FHE tonight, I grabbed the friend and read a story about going the "extra mile." It was an on-the-whim lesson, as usual, but it sparked an idea. I got a jar and pinto beans. Whenever someone in the family goes the extra mile, we'll earn a bean in the jar. When the kids are obedient and kind, I need to notice and give beans. I can also threaten to lose beans if they're being bad. Of course, Sam will just contribute on his good moments, and that will make Aubrey happy. We can also add if Dad and Mom go the extra mile as well. I think this will help all of us. Aubrey was SO excited that she wanted to help me get the jar and beans, and go the extra mile! Oh- when the jar is full we'll get donuts or go to a fun place or something. I said donuts, but it can change. :)
We are working on doing school time as often as possible to train ourselves for this fall when (I think) I'm going to attempt the utah virtual academy and school at home. i don't know what the future brings completely, but this feels like the right thing to do at this moment. However, I enrolled her at Venture Academy for their lottery already, but I don't have to do that. I also got another mom, Joyce Winn, to enroll there and haven't told her yet that I changed my mind. oh! This has been so hard! I really want to do the right thing for Aubrey. I have big dreams for her and Sam. Well, that's a post for another day. I need to go to bed, so I can wake up at 5:39 to go run in the cold with Emily Chapman.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

2 Cute Same THings

1. When Sam wants to move FAST, he gets in crawling postition, puts his head down, and then ZOOM! I think the head down makes him more aerodynamic!
2. When I put him down for naps and bed, he wants to be there. I loves his nap times. His favorite is when I put the blankets on him. I lift the blanket, and let it fall so there is a 'whooph' of air across his face. He loves it, and grabs at the blanket. He always go to sleep and wakes up HAPPY! Mostly, he is always happy unless he is hungry or needs a diaper change. Such an easy baby!