Saturday, November 29, 2008

Another Way to Lose Body Heat

We had an interesting conversation in our van the other night. (Nothing new really. ALL our conversations are pretty weird.) We were driving up to see the lights at the local park, and the King and Number One somehow got to where we can lose body heat from.

Number One: When it's cold, you need a hat. Most of your body heat is lost from your head.
King: There are other places you can lose body heat.
Number One: Like where?
King: Well, like from your back end.
Number One: Yeah. That's because of that hole back there. All the heat can come out of it.

Yep. I'm a proud mama.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

You Can't Tell Me God Doesn't Answer Prayers

I've never doubted the existence of a loving Heavenly Father. It's been easy to have faith because He's always been there for me. Yesterday was one of those times when I just knew I had to document what happened. As small and simple as this may seem, it was just one reminder of how much God loves his children.

I got a call around 12:45 from the principal at the Beast's school. She sounded nervous, so I figured that he'd fallen into the lake at his field trip or something. (That, or she's still afraid of me from the beginning of this year.) She told me that his teacher had called to explain that he was playing in some leaves at his field trip. Somehow, he lost his processor in the leaves. She said to please call the teacher's cell phone.

I called his teacher and the poor thing sounded just frantic. She said they'd all been looking for a really long time to no avail, and they just didn't know what to do. She felt terrible. I assured her that all would be well and that I was picking up some people to come help me look and would be right there. The King had just walked in for lunch and said he'd stay with Pretty and Snort. So, off I went.

On the way, I called Marlene to see if she'd come. She willingly came along with me. Another friend, Brianna, said she'd also meet us there. Then, I called one of the MOFia girls and asked her to post what had happened and ask for prayers that we could PLEASE find this processor.
Finally, I started calling church members to see if anyone might have a metal detector. Surprisingly, Janna mentioned that her husband had one. She said her son, Alex, would be off work shortly and could bring it to us. Hooray!! There was hope!!!

Nothing could prepare me for what I'd find when I got to the location of the field trip. I thought there might be a pile or two of leaves to go through. Not so, my friends. Not so. It was a huge area, easily the size of a football field completely covered in leaves. His teacher showed us where he'd been (which was EVERYWHERE) and then had to go back to the school. She was almost in tears with worry over what would happen. I assured her that we'd be fine and that it would be okay even if we never found it. These things happen. He's a five year old and this is a small piece of machinery.

So, there we were. Just the three of us literally looking for a needle in a haystack. Just as a matter of reference, the processor looks like a large hearing aid. Attached to it is a wire about an inch and a half long with a circle attached to that which is just larger than a nickle. So, not a very big piece. And it's all black except for one tiny green piece I'd added to it for fun.

I had a prayer in my heart the whole time. With every leaf I lifted, I just prayed that we could be guided. Brianna and Marlene stepped aside and had a prayer of their own. We all remained so calm and cool and collected. A sister from the ward called and said another family who owned an x-ray business offered their services. If all else failed, we could bag up the leaves, x-ray them, and know where the processor was. And, of course, the metal detector was coming.

I knew we'd be there a long time looking. After all, a huge group had just been there with teachers and students all looking frantically to find it for a long time. And there were just three of us. Suddenly, after less than 15 minutes of looking, Marlene yelled "I've got it!". There it was. Covered in dirt and leaves, but in one piece. One tiny part, the circle part, was sticking out and Marlene spotted it between those thousands and thousands of leaves. And in record time.

I called to let everyone know we had it and we headed home. The King went back to work and I went on with my day as if nothing had happened. But something had happened. Something big which could easily be mistaken for something so small. The simple prayers of many were answered. The King and I both commented on how calm and cool we were about the whole thing. We knew that was God's hand, too. He heard our prayers. He knew the Beast would be lost without his "baby ear", and He provided a way for us to find it for him.

So, I just had to share that with you all. It had a big impact on me about how mighty works can come from small and simple a prayer in our hearts.

Happy Birthday, Snort!

Snort turned one on Sunday. I took a little tour down memory lane with him. I thought I'd share it with you, too.
He was, by far, my biggest baby weighing in at 7 lb. 9.5 ounces. He was strong and healthy.
His brothers and sister couldn't get enough of him. (Well, maybe his sister could. She was less than impressed to say the least.)
Even from just days old, he was a happy and content baby. We were so pleased to have him as part of our family.
At just a few weeks old, on Christmas Eve, he got sick. Very sick. We almost lost him. It was the scariest parenting moment either of us had ever experienced.

But, he bounced back and came home. He maintained that happy disposition he'd had from day one.
Then, he developed a problem with his belly button that had to be repaired right away. So, back to the hospital he went.
But he came home and went right back to being the happy sweet boy he always was.

Later, he had to go back and forth for more troubles with his breathing. More hospital visits and more doctors and more pokes. But, always the happy baby he always was.

Eventually, we noticed that his eyes were very crossed. The dr. noticed, too. So, Snort got glasses.

Can you see how he has maintained his sweet, happy disposition?


Friday, November 21, 2008

I am Thoroughly Humiliated, But You Can Laugh at My Expense

***Warning. Some of this may be rated least.***

My friend, Buffy, has been a little down lately. On her blog, she noted that she was feeling better because she got some good text messages. I decided to be a smart aleck and send her a REALLY good text message. You know, the type that's totally off-color, but sure to make her laugh her adorable little hiney off.

I got her cell number and texted something to the affect of "You need great sex. It releases endorphins which will make you happy." But it was slightly than that. She texted back that it'd been a while and she needed it. I replied that she needed to go to the local novelty shop and get something to make it REALLY worth her time. Being the great friend that I am, I gave specific details of what she should get.

The text conversation went back and forth for a while, and then she says to me "Am I being punked? Who is this??". I replied with just my first name because, really, how many people with my name and spelling do you know? She replies, "Hi, Aimee. My name is Marc. I think you have the wrong number, but you've made my day anyway." OH. MY. GOSH!!!! I apologized profusely and told him I was off to find a rock to die in. Now. You have to understand that this was a VERY colorful conversation including details such as batteries and remote controls. Yeah. Don't ask.

About an hour later, he texted me again that he'd be at the local bar nursing his tequila if I wanted to stop by. Apparently I'm intriguing. I replied that I'm extremely happily married, but would let my local single friends know. That was the end of that. Honestly, I'm sure he'd have been surprised to see a very pregnant mother of four with two cats, two dogs, a turtle, and some baby fingerprints on her butt arrive at the bar. I know. I'm quite a catch.

In my horror, I checked again to be sure I had the right number. That would be a big fat NO. I was one stupid number off. Yeah. I'm dying inside. Go ahead. It's okay to laugh at me. The King is beyond laughing. I think he's just glad it wasn't him.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

A Memo to My Cats

As Number One will tell you, being pregnant makes me slightly more irritable. Maybe it's the huge watermelon I appear to have swallowed which remains at my waistline continually gaining in size and making my poor, sad little body more and more sad. Whatever the cause, I feel the need to express my displeasure to a few I also have issues with those people who hog up a whole lane at the Wal-Mart parking lot while they wait for someone to unload and pull out. I'll be giving those geniuses a post of their own, though. And it WON'T be pretty.

Okay, so the cats. I have two cats. Well, the King has one cat and I have one cat. But, I suppose I claim them both. (Although my cat is practically the queen of the world and is moderately perfect while his cat appears to be riding the kitty short bus. I'm just sayin'...) Overall, they're good cats. They stay out of my way, don't damage the furniture, and only meow when the children have destroyed their food supply or simply have opted not to feed them for days on end.

Occasionally, however, they make very bad choices. Very bad. This memo applies to those times.

Dear Mouse and Marius (That's their names.):

It has come to my attention that you are unaware of a few social faux pas which you have repeatedly committed. While I realize that Marius is usually the culprit, I'm opting to address you both so you can't come back and meow at me that I never told you. Consider yourselves told.

1. It is considered rude to continually go out the front door only long enough to eat grass. If you are afraid of your own shadow, you should simply stay indoors. While I'm sure the grass seems delicious to you at the time, you should know by now that you will vomit said grass up every. single. time. you eat it. Behavior like this could lead your mildly irritable owner to feel the urge to put you out with the dogs for a few minutes just for a good laugh.

2. It is great that you have such impeccable hygeine (mostly Mouse. Marius is just pretending to bathe so I won't throw him in the sink.), however I don't want to HEAR you licking your privates. Licking one's privates is generally frowned upon no matter where you go. This is not just an issue of me being irritable. Trust me. For your own safety, and in an effort to extend your life, I strongly discourage you from laying at the foot of my bed and licking your privates loudly and for extended amounts of time. When a pillow is thrown at you for said licking, please be advised that simply moving two feet away and starting over doesn't make the situation better. It just makes me angrier because I then have to actually get up and put you in the cat room so I don't have to hear your disgusting licking.

3. When you decide it's time to cough up a hairball, please refrain from making that awful hacking sound while walking all over the house. It's gross. I mean, seriously gross. I don't chase you off for my own thrills. I do it so you can go into the cat room where things are easier to clean up. If you wouldn't lick your privates so often, you'd more than likely find that the hairballs are reduced quite a bit. If you choose to vomit on neatly folded clothes, please note that I will be a bit grumpier than usual for the remainder of that day. If you choose to vomit in or on my shoe, please note that said shoe is likely to come flying at you.

4. While we love that you want to be so affectionate, please take note of the fact that laying on our heads or drooling while we're trying to sleep or do some bonding of our own does NOT count as a way to get us to love you more. Instead, it makes us want to lock you up for the night. There are calling hours posted during which times you may come for your daily petting and scratching behind the ears...assuming you haven't broken the above listed rules that day. If we haven't personally invited you to sleep on our heads and drool on us, please assume you may take your usual place at the foot of the bed, but remember that is not the place to lick your privates.

Feel free to copy and refer to this memo frequently. (I understand that you're bothered that the dogs didn't get a memo. Let's be honest, though. They're NOT smart animals and no memo is going to change that. There is little or no hope for them.) Should you feel the urge to do something questionable, think about whether or not it's listed in this memo or if it might be something to bring about another memo. If it is, simply do not do said behavior.

Thank you!
-The Management

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Well, I Guess He is Our Kid Afterall

Snort will be one on Sunday. I know. I can't believe it, either. He's been our easiest, most well-behaved baby of the four. We were starting to wonder if maybe he was switched at birth because he seemed to be far too mellow and laid back to be one of our wild children.

Then it happened. He's turned to the Dark Side. His siblings have taught him to use the Force for evil, evil things. The other day I found him in my tupperware cabinet. He'd pulled every single item out. What?!? It must be a fluke, right? My sweet innocent little Snort would never CHOOSE to do anything causing me more work. He's too perfect.

I opted to redirect him for a few minutes while I went ahead and put the cabinet back together. When I finished just five minutes later, I had to track him down. Where could that sweet angel be? I had no idea the horror I was about to find. There he was in Pretty's room. He'd pulled every stitch of clothing out of the dresser. Well, all that he could reach anyway.

Where did I go wrong with him? At what point did he decide to join the ranks of his wild siblings and cahoot with them to bring me more gray hairs? (Yes, I have gray hairs. I don't like to talk about it much, though. It's just too painful.) When did he *gasp!!!* learn to play with his sister cooperatively???

It gets worse. This morning, I was doing Pretty's hair after I got her out of the tub. I gave Snort LOTS of toys to play with. I even made sure they were his favorite ones. I finished her hair and went to where he was. Well, where he should have been. Was he there? Nope! That little sneak had gotten into the cat room and had his way with the cat food. There are tiny morsels everywhere!!!

I guess the good news is that we now know he wasn't switched at birth. The bad news is that I think the four of them are planning on teaching all they know to the new baby and then plotting a mutiny one of these days. Should I ever go more than two weeks without posting, you should probably call and check on me. Chances are my children have me bound and gagged and are doing cruel things like feeding me copious amounts of broccoli.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Pretty didn't really want to go to bed tonight. The Beast felt bad for her. He didn't like that she was crying a little bit. This is what he had to say about it:

"Pretty is sad. She needs a song. (singing) Twinkle, twinkle little star how I wonder what you are....(speaking) Um, what comes next? (I gave him the next couple lyrics). Okay. Thanks. (singing again) Up above the world so high like a diamond in the sky. (stops abruptly and goes to speaking again) Mom, it's not working. She's still awake. I'm going to bed now."

He may be a little eccentric, but he's got a heart of gold and the voice of an angel. How could anyone NOT love that kid?

Friday, November 7, 2008

I Think I'm Onto Something

I've shared this idea for a little while, and everyone sort of chuckles at me. I think the truth is that deep down inside, they're just jealous that they aren't as brilliant as me. The idea? Well, here it is...the long-winded version...well, I guess it's long-winded.

Anyone who has ever had children knows that the laundry seems endless. I could honestly do four loads of laundry a day and STILL never find the bottom of the laundry pile. It's like my laundry read the Bible and decided that it needs to multiply and replenish the laundry room. And, do you know what's the worst thing about laundry? You're NEVER done! At the end of the day, you get undressed and there in the basket is more stupid laundry to wash.

My solution is brilliant, I think, and environmentally friendly. Naked weekends. Yep, you heard me. Naked. Without Clothing. Not even a loin cloth because that would have to be washed. Maybe a fig leaf, but I'm not sure where to get those. Of course, plucking leaves from trees isn't environmentally friendly, so I guess that'd be out too.

Honestly, people. Let's think about this suggestion. If everyone went naked for the whole weekend, wives and mothers everywhere could finally catch up on the laundry. And just think of how much less they'd have to do. Plus the time we'd save in general everyday living would be incredible. Ever tally up how much time it takes to unbutton those pants before going to the bathroom? And then pull them back up? For a pregnant woman, it's even more time. I'm just sayin'...

Yes, I know it would seem a little awkward at first. I'm sure a few people would feel strange at church with a naked preacher, but if we're ALL doing it, then it would just'd eventually just be the norm. Think of how liberating it could be, too! Women wouldn't have to wear panty hose or uncomfortable skirts that ride up. Men wouldn't need those tight shirts with ties around their necks. And no one would have a butt snuggy all weekend long!!!

Seriously, people! This is a stroke of genius that I'm onto. Maybe I should call my local politicians and see what I can do about making it law. President Elect Obama seems like a fairly open-minded guy. I should call him. Or maybe not. I wouldn't want him to think I'm too brilliant and offer me a job as a cabinet officer or anything. I'm content just being a mom for now.

All in favor? What? Why am I only hearing crickets out there? You people KNOW you think this is a brilliant plan. Just admit it. *sigh* I guess I'll go do yet another load of laundry while I wait for you people. While I'm at it, I might go get some sunless tanner for when this idea really starts to catch on.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Missionary Mondays

I've mentioned before that we happen to have a really good set of missionaries right now. They've started a new little tradition with my kids, and the kids can't get enough of it. Missionaries get a day of prep. to do their laundry, shopping, playing, etc. on Mondays. So, these wacky guys some over when the boys get out of school and play with them. On their free days. Are they crazy?!?! Beats me, but the kids think it's great. I have LOTS of pictures to show what it's like when these guys come around. Oh! And I should mention that they always bring some sort of activity to play with while they're here. Sometimes it's football (well, there is ALWAYS football). Other times it's tennis. We've had water balloons, screaming flying balloons, and some leaf raking. It's become quite the thing to do on Monday afternoon to the extent that we now have neighborhood kids coming along to join in the fun now and then.

The Beast conned Elder Barnes into raking and re-raking a pile of leaves for him to jump into. I swear that kid could sell ice to an eskimo. It's amazing the things he gets people to do for him.

Number One can't get enough of practicing football with Elder McNamara. I have to laugh at the way the boys say his name, though. Number One calls him "Elder McMara" and the Beast just calls him "Acanara". It's pretty cute.

Number One also loves playing tennis. Elder Barnes is always happy to have a tennis partner.
Why is this picture of a rake here? This is the Beast's way of getting on top of things. He decided it would be best to rake the leaves out of the tree so they don't mess up the grass in the first place. Silly kid.

The Beast got a hold of my camera. This is the shot he got of Elder Barnes with the tennis racket. Nice.

Who doesn't just love a missionary who can make paper airplanes that go "super high into the sky with the aliens" ?
What happens after playing football with Elder MacNamara? You get tired kids, of course.

Here's the Beast's best effort at taking pics. of "Elder Acanara"

There are other crazy things these guys do, too. They showed up one morning with two loaves of lemon bread that they "made because they had free time and some ingredients and they hoped our family could enjoy it". They've come to spray poison to kill my poison ivy. On the nights that they come for dinner, they usually get into the dress-up stuff with the kids. The foam swords come out every time, and it's sheer chaos. But, who could ask for more? My kids feel loved when the missionaries come around, and that's the best part of all. (Well, the fact that they're entertained for a few minutes isn't too bad, either).

Saturday, November 1, 2008

What Parent Forgets the Camera on Halloween??!?!

Hi, my name is Aimee and I forgot to take even one single picture of any of my four children on Halloween. While I acknowledge that this is often grounds for stoning, I beg your forgiveness. It's not that I don't love my children. It's just that there are so many of my children that, in the process of making sure they were all accounted for, I simply forgot the camera.

I can tell you about our Halloween, though. Just use your imagination as I tell the story. Whatever you're picturing is probably pretty close to how it really was. If all else fails, picture organized chaos. See it? Yep, that was our Halloween.

Number One went as a football player. I figured that we put so much money, time, and heart into getting him that uniform that we'd let him get every minute out of it that he could. He was pretty proud to be wearing his Bearcat uniform. (Honestly, I think he just likes wearing it because "chicks dig it".)

The Beast was feeling a little bit indecisive this year. For his school party, he wore Number One's old Peter Pan costume. He apparently thought he was some sort of porn star because when his teacher asked him what he was, he said "I'm Peter Pants. Wanna' see my sword?" Those of you who really know me would also know my brain went straight to the gutter the minute he uttered those words. For the actual day of Halloween, he wanted to be a pirate. So, I threw together a pirate costume to wear to school for trick-or-treating at the hospital. He forgot to bring home most of the pieces of that costume (which also went to the Peter Pants costume), so he trick-or-treated as a soccer player. He was pleased with that because he still got candy. That's what really matters, right?

Pretty reused her Tinkerbell costume from last year. This year, though, we told everyone she is actually Stinkerbell, who is the naughty cousin of Tinkerbell. I don't know if Tinkerbell really has a naughty cousin, but she does now. Pretty represented her character well, and has the scrapes on the tops of her feet to prove it. That's what happens when you constantly run away from your mommy and daddy and fall down face first in the street only after removing the socks and shoes your mother has just finished lovingly placing on your feet. It's my own fault really. I should have just let her carry the football she wanted to carry. (Has anyone else caught on yet that she's just a little bit of a tomboy?)

Snort wore the Scooby-Doo costume that both of his brothers have worn before. He couldn't possibly have been any cuter. He was a little disgruntled to realize he was stuck in some silly outfit and got nothing to show for it. Well, almost nothing. Sister Adams gave him a glow stick at the ward party. Thank you, Sister Adams. He was so proud of that thing!

As for festivities, there were plenty. The Beast's school had a fun little party, then there was the Halloween carnival at the high school, and finally Trunk or Treating at the ward Halloween party at the bishop's house. I am more than ready to be done with Halloween. Of course, it wouldn't have been Halloween if we didn't do the real trick-or-treating. So, after the ward party, we spent some time touring the neighborhood with a helmetless football player, chatty soccer player, barefoot fairy, and blissfully unaware Scooby-Doo. Oh! And the missionaries aparently are suckers for punishment and asked if they could come with us. It was actually lucky that they came. They make great hand holders for small people in dark costumes.

So, there you have it. Picture it as you will. Whatever you're picturing is probably how it really did look. (Just make sure you're picturing all four of them looking really cute. No matter how crazy it was, they were all really cute...even the porn star with the sword).