Sunday, December 13, 2009

They Did It!!!

Can you believe my handsome boys and amazing daughter met their goals . . .

Keston - yep Keston did it - he is on the Honor Roll for the first trimester. I would like to say he worked hard but he is like his Uncle Rob and just coasts along in school and he finally applied a minimal amount of effort and he made it. Just think what would happen if he actually brought home homework or studied for a test. I hope he keeps it up for the second trimester! Way to go Keston.

Chad - you may want to sit down for this one - but he read 200+ minutes this week to reach his 1000 minutes before Christmas goal. Yippee and he is even asking for books for Christmas. I did say you better sit down. Will he keep up the momentum over Christmas, stay tuned. Next stop - those awful spelling tests.

Tylissa - for her first trimester of High School she has a 3.571 GPA. Her goal is to just do great and she is working so hard. She has a A- in Honors English can you believe that. I don't know where she got her brains but she definitely works hard and long on her homework.

Thanks for letting me take a moment to boast and now (or maybe soon) I will be humble again.

oh - ending quote of the day from Chad and it is a repeat of what I posted on Facebook but Friday at work was the holiday party so everyone in the office was dressed up and looking great. I did my hair and even wore eyeliner and I was looking good and feeling great until I came home and leave it to Chad to keep me centered . . . I was laying on the floor and he comes up and starts pulling at my forehead and says "Mom, you have enough lines on your forehead that it looks like snake skin" Oh feel the love!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Lion King

For my birthday we got to go to Spokane to see the Lion King. We had great seats - first row of the terrace level. We got to the theatre and purchased an overpriced (an I mean really overpriced program) and headed to our seats. Chad was looking through the program and he starts going off on how stupid it was going to be because it was "just a mask" and you "can see the person", you're not supposed to "see the person if it is a puppet". And I sat there thinking what have I done, he is going to ruin the show for everyone around us. Well the first number starts and there are actors up in the balconies with us and that grabbed his attention, then the animals started coming on stage, then the elderly gentleman sitting next to Chad gives him a little nudge and points down. Coming up the isle was this huge elephant. One person in each leg. It was amazing and it shut Chad up instantly.

By the intermission he was going on about how cool it was how the lions masks came down. The one thing I didn't account for was the time change so by the end of the show Chad was almost asleep and Keston was bored. The consensus . . . the boys think Griz Football is better so the girls will enjoy the theatre alone from now on.

We were lucky enough to stay in the hotel right across the river and we were able to walk to the theatre and back - no fight traffic. It was great. Tylissa loved this one but I liked Phantom better. It could be that I was still sick and popping generic day quill just to get through.

So since you aren't allowed to take pictures - I had to get the pictures off the Internet. It was amazing. Zazu, Timon and Pumba were my favorites. It was a great night!
Scar and Zazu - Scar's mask would move up to be a hat like thing and with a certain motion it would come down and cover his face like a mask - amazing!

Beautiful Sunny Day

It has been the most gorgeous week. The sun is shining, a light frost covers the ground and makes everything sparkly. Oh, it was -10 degrees on Tuesday, 0 degrees yesterday, and this morning it is a beautiful 10 degrees. Amazing what 20 degrees will do - I may still have ears!

Our furnace went on strike briefly Tuesday - it was over worked and underpaid. With a little love and affection we kept it working but the house was a brisk 60 degrees before we got it running smoothly. I basically parked my hiney on the heat vent and the kids couldn't figure out why the house wasn't warming up faster.

Chilly chilly chilly - but I love dressing in the layers (a big cheer for long underwear). Why I'm not sure but I enjoy the gloves, hats, scarves - as long as I don't have to be out in the cold for extended periods of time (5 minutes tops). Poor Keston is freezing at the bus stop every morning.

Hopefully it will warm up enough to snow. Yep we have a skiff and that is all. The brown grass can still been seen. I'm dreaming of a white Christmas . . .

Good Morning Update

Don't you just love mornings . . . not. It is the wee hours of the morning and I've been up for over two hours. Why did women get the over-active, multitasking brain? I have no idea what woke me up but instantly I started thinking about everything that needs to get done - what's working, what's not working, Young Women's, Christmas, do I really need to make cookies, I hate that they changed our staff meeting time, did I pay the bills, there is so much going on at work - can I really take some days off for the holiday . . . and it goes on and on and on. So why fight it? Just get up and guess what I discovered . . . no one else is on the computer this early in the morning. I get a turn. NOTE: I hope this doesn't become a regular occurrence cause I still strongly dislike mornings.

So what have we been up to . . . well the strangest thing is that in Chad's class each student needs to read 1000 minutes before Christmas. Those who love and adore Chad know that this is not a strong point and he is fabulous at making excuses not to read. It is a rare occasion for him to finish a book. Well make anything into a competition and that boy is on board. So yesterday morning I asked him to do something and I don't remember what but his response was "I can't mom, I have to read" I nearly burnt myself with the curling iron. So in the last two days he has read almost 200 minutes. He came home, did his homework and then went somewhere quiet to read. No bribes necessary. I should get a picture just to prove it to everyone. He says tomorrow is the deadline and he is getting close to the 1000 minutes so tonight will be another round of reading. I know so pick your chin up off the computer desk and say Great Job Chad!

Tylissa got her first mid-term report card from High School and she had all As and Bs - you go girl. She also received her first recruitment letter from a University. She didn't care at all but holy schmoly it was even signed by the president of the university. No stamp - no scan. She is going to be gone tomorrow. But great things are coming her way - I can feel it.

Keston has to be surgically removed from the computer screen. He is getting involved in the STAND club at school and this is the first week that he has had missing assignments. We made it almost 4 months. Keston made the comment last night coming home from the church that he only has a few more Sundays of Primary. How did that happen?

Val still has a job - the city actually laid off someone from the Fire Department this week. Scary, we'll see what happens with the new city manager. I may have a new job - we've been talking about it for a couple of months and I had my interview, hopefully next week I will know something.

Tylissa will be getting up soon for Seminary. How much more can I do . . .

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Home Sick

Things you have to do to stay at home so you can update the blog and take a nap or naps really it hasn't been a nap, yesterday I didn't leave the bed. Luckily it was just a little flu bug so I should be good to go tomorrow - maybe. I didn't even hear the kids get up and leave this morning - Keston was all on his own this morning because Val was with Tylissa at seminary. So what have we learned - the kids don't need me to get them up and get them breakfast they are big enough to do it all on their own. I'm not sure how I feel about that . . . is it a good thing or do I still want them to need their mommy!

Well I'm off to take another nap.

Keston's favorite class

You'll never guess what it is - not math, science, and definitely not English. This trimester Keston signed up for a sewing class and he is loving it and I'm told by his teacher that he is quite the seamster - is that a word because he's not a seamstress . . . huh something to think about.

Anyhoo . . . he has made a gym bag, his pillow, dice, and nunchuck things. Granny may have help this year with the jammies! I'm hoping he'll learn how to hem pants.

Calvin in real life

Chad's class earned a somewhat free day where the kids got to dress up like characters from their favorite book and, of course, we are informed the day before but we pulled it off. Meet Calvin minus Hobbes, the scary part is that Chad has more Calvin behaviors than I would like to admit.
Does the word mischievous come to mind?
We were trying to get his hair like Calvin and I caught Chad making faces in the mirror. What a kid!

Halloween a bit late

It is a bit sad when the kids are at an age that they are all going in separate directions. Chad is the only one who carved a pumpkin. The other two pumpkins are still just sitting in the garage.

He did it all by himself (I did help get some of the guts out) but the carving was all him.

Friday Tylissa went to her first stake dance and had a great time. Keston went his first middle school dance and he just ran around. I am still hoping that he is scared of girls. Maybe!
Halloween was a busy day. The boys went down to Missoula to watch the Griz play Weber State. So Tylissa and I stayed home and went to the ward Trunk-or-Treat. From there Tylissa went to a party. When the guys got home Keston went to his party and Chad and Val met me up at Toren's for Chad to go trick-or-treating. Crazy day! I miss the kids being little.

The jellyfish . . . and a cute one!

The spoon - it's what he wanted.

And the too cool to dress up so just get me a mask.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Crazy Coworkers = Crazy Presentations

We have a big project going on at work where all the managers are reviewing job descriptions (there are over 800) because we are in the works of revamping our job descriptions and evaluation tool. So the supervisors at the Brendan House called and asked if we (Tiffany and I) could come to a staff meeting to "PUMP US UP" and get them excited about this project. Well smoke starting coming out of Tiffany's ears her fabulous brain was working overtime. The "Pump you up" was ringing like a bell. So we did some quick planning and showed up for the meeting as Hans and Franz the cousins of Arnold Schwarzenegger from Saturday Night Live. Our boss is the VP of Human Resources and the Administrator for the Brendan House - she had no idea what we were doing and I am glad to report that she laughed so hard and we still have our jobs.

The grand entrance!

Listening to questions!
Needless to say the presentation went great - once they were able to stop laughing. It is a presentation they will never forget. Here are the lovely pics. It is hard to make a serious, straining, workout face when you're laughing.
Tiffany had a life jacket on and water wings and it gets better . . . she shoved pillows in her pants for those bulging leg muscles. I was not so clever I just had stuffed animals for biceps.
Things you do to enjoy your job!

The Mighty Runner

As you already know Keston started x-country this year and he did fabulous. He had a great time and really enjoyed it. This is him finishing the Mountain West Classic in Missoula and the University of Montana. The highschool runners went first. There were about 300 middle school runners from all over Montana, Idaho, and Washington. It was amazing that so many people like running . . .

Anyhoo, Sorry that it is not the right side up so just tilt you head and enjoy. It was the shortest race he had to run at 1.3 miles and his time was 10:01. I'm so proud of that kid.

Getting in the starting gates.

After the race - I told him if anyone gets in his way to blind them with his whiteness!

This was the race the week before in Pablo. Thanks to kind friends they snapped a picture (he's in the back) because I was with Chad at football this week. We had to alternate.

Missoula was Keston's last race for the year - he got sick and then it got really cold. He went to practice a couple of times but then his fever came back so I told him he would have to wait until next year. It was a great year and I can't wait too see what he will do next year!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Happy Birthday Granny

A bit late but still full of love!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Football is my life!

Keep your eye on #22!

Chad looks so little - but he is on a great team! He is quick!

Stay with your man and don't let him through!

Close but not really! The kid is having the time of his life but we are still working on being humble!


Week before last was homecoming and Tylissa had a great time. Tylissa and I went out to her teacher's house and helped with the float on Thursday and then she walked the parade on Friday. It was a great weekend for her. The game was terrible - our offensive line needs to learn how to block so the quarterback can do something besides get sacked. UGH! I won't even mention the score.

The Freshman gang with the float!

Walking in the parade - Braves on the Warpath!

Saturday night was the dance and Tylissa met up with some friends. She hasn't even been to a stake dance before but she went. I learned the biggest lesson from her. In my mind it takes a while to get ready for a high school dance. She showered and got dressed. I was freakin' out because she wouldn't even let me blow dry her hair. I was in tears thinking she has now marked herself as the "girl-with-wet-hair" and she will never dance, she'll become the outcast. High school kids can be very cruel and I didn't want her to go through that.

Well she went to the dance with wet hair and no makeup - she doesn't bother with that stuff and she had a fabulous time. She came home with smiles. I wish I had her confidence. She is who she is. You can like her the way she is and if you don't like her for what she is then she doesn't really care. She is not changing for her friends. WOW! She is one amazing girl - how I got so lucky is beyond me.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Trek Video

This is a quicky - here is a link to pictures of Tylissa's trek. It looked like such a great time that for a brief moment - and I mean brief - I almost wished I was there. Almost!

Love to everyone!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

The Jersey

Chad came home tonight from football practice and they handed out football jerseys. He wanted to sleep in it but I did convinced him that the numbers might stick together. So when I went to tuck him in I was looking all over the floor (because that is where all the clothes are - big surprise) trying to figure out what he did with it. Low and behold I look up at the closet and there on an actual hanger is The Jersey. The only thing hanging in the closet is The Jersey. The kid doesn't hang up his Sunday clothes - they end up on the floor with everything else but The Jersey has found a special spot in the closet.

I am loving football season - Chad comes home and gets his homework done with no complaining. He is ready to go 1/2 hour before we need to leave the house. And now he is using a hanger. What will happen when the season is over?

Monday, August 31, 2009

First Day of School

I think we may has scared Chad's teacher off with this one but Chad wanted to scare away the competition at the tetherballs. He is full swing into Grade 4. Can't wait for Granny to come and give this boy a HAIRCUT!

Keston headed off to the bus stop. All of a sudden he wanted jeans and boy did he grow up overnight. He is the lone soldier at the middle school.

His goal is to get on the honor roll so keep asking him how he is doing! And he started cross country (running not skiing) today and boy was he exhausted. His first meet is on Sept 12. Stay tuned for more updates.

Tylissa's first day at Flathead High School. Can you believe it? She did okay on the first day because it was only freshman. The second day her facebook said "highschoolers are really really tall"

She is just way too cute!

Seminary started this morning and we did okay but I have a feeling that by Friday some attitude may arise!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Trouble with Teeth

Wouldn't you know it. Tylissa and Keston have never had a cavity but yesterday Chad had 4 more cavities filled - I think we are up to 12 total and the kid in only 9. The one filling was so bad we have to watch it and they may end up pulling the tooth. So the dentist was showing me his x-rays and stated that Chad has the mouth of a 14 year old. Huh! His jaw and teeth are more developed than his 9 years. You can see his wisdom teeth . . . nice huh. At his age you should only be able to see buds where the wisdom teeth will be, but not Chad he has teeth there so while most people get their wisdom teeth pulled at 18 - 19 years old, Chad will probably be around 14.

Back to all the cavities. Did you know that if you have a more acidic mouth you are more prone to cavities? Acid + Sugar = explosive cavities. Not I, so Chad is in the high risk area. So we can spend $40 dollars every couple of months to buy him specialized toothpaste, mouth rise, and spray to keep his acid down or spend way more than that every year to fill all the cavities. Poor kid. He better have great eyesight!

Friday, August 21, 2009

The End of Summer

This has seemed like a blah summer, we really didn't go anywhere and now it is coming to a screaming end. Chad is so excited - he gets to play tackle football. They picked up his equipment earlier this week. We haven't gotten the team jersey yet-they are putting the names on the the back. His first practice is Saturday we'll see if "football is my life" is still his motto. I know it won't be mine with two hour practices every Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. UGH!

We went to fair for the first time in years. Chad was still in a stroller last time we went. It is nice to have all the kids big enough to go on any ride they want. I even tried to relive my youth and went on Zipper and the boys talked me into going on Kamakazi. Here are some fun pictures.

Chad and I on the ferris wheel - it's a good thing his nose was clean!

The boys on Kamakazi - they are right there in the front and they went on this ride over and over. We didn't get Tylissa on there, she was not to pleased with me after Zipper.

Tylissa got her face painted and her favorite part is looking at all the animals. The miniature horses and bunnies were her favorite. Although the baby donkeys were adorable. Notice the haircut - more info further down.

Granny - I now understand the evilness behind the innocent looking Berry-Go-Round apple/berry ride. Sure is goes around slow and it is in the "kiddie" section of the fair. DO NOT be deceived! See that big wheel - do ya! The kids have control over how fast that EVIL apple/berry thing spins! The use that big wheel to make it spin and they had it going so fast I almost lost my lunch and I have never felt that way after a ride. I should have paid more attention to Tylissa's face - it looks like she was plotting her evil plan. Give me the Zipper any day but not the Berry-Go-Round.

This is the kids on the last row of the pirate ship. Talk about give you butterflies in your stomach on the giant swing. Next round we'll move more to the middle. Tylissa was mad at me after this one too.
It was a good day - we went after I got off work and then we went home, ate, and cooled off then we went back. It was fun to ride on the rides with the lights on. I even got my cotton candy. We all slept great that night.

In preparation for High School, Tylissa got her hair cut. It is in the cute A line cut where it is shorter in the back. It looks adorable but she wouldn't let me take a good picture. I liked it better when she was three and you couldn't get her to stop posing for pictures.

What is this? - oh yeah - double trouble. We had a great visit from Rob and Becky. They took the Chad and Tylissa to the waterslides (Keston was at camp). Sorry I had to work guys, but thanks for coming down to see us.

We had Tylissa's open house at the high school yesterday. Wouldn't you know it that she goes from one end of the high school to the opposite side (meaning outside and across the street). We might need to borrow Austin's power scooter so she can get to class on time.
Keston had his open house at the middle school today and we are pros up there now. Unfortunatley for Keston he has the same team of teachers that Tylissa did so he has some expectations to live up to. He is thinking about trying cross country this year.
I did get Chad to calm down and go get school supplies. He is still not happy about school starting but oh we hope it will be a good year.

BIG Reunion

On August 1st we celebrated Grandpa's 75th birthday. There were so many people there. It was the first time that all 11 kids were together in about 12 years, probably longer. So Tylissa and I found refuge under a tree, she read a book and I just watched people. Here are the "pure bloods" Val, Dallen, and Kelsie. I didn't get a picture of all the kids, I'm waiting for the emails to come in. Then we'll post it.

The highlight of the trip (for me) Pam and Jerry stopped by with their 3 boys. We haven't seen them in years but we were able to sit and chat like all those years hadn't flown by. Val and Jerry have been buds (in girl language it would BFFs) since they were 12. Oh the stories. We had a great time catching up and listening to those two rehash "the good ol' days". Their boys have sure grown into handsome young men.

The picture is - Val, Michelle, Tel (16), Pam, Ty (15), Jerry
Tylissa, Trent (13) and Chad. Keston has already left with cousins.
It was a quick trip to Rexburg - we drove on Friday, had the picnic on Saturday, left Sunday. We drove around campus and tried to find the spots where Val and I fell in love (this is the part the kids would groan and roll their eyes). Campus has changed so much. We did find my apartment and JBs. Everything else has changed too much!

Sunday, July 26, 2009


Tylissa had a great time on trek she was glad when it was over and all she wanted was a taco. Here are some great pictures.

Most of the youth from the ward, getting ready to head out.

The cutest pioneer ever!

Pa loading up the handcart.

The "Porter" family Riley, Haley, Abby, Billy, Sierra, Tejia, Pa, Tylissa, Ma, Kylie, and Sam. A great family and a young family. They only had two boys who were 14 and two 17 year olds, the rest of the group was 14-15 years old but they did great!

Safe and Sound

They survived - we weren't worried about Val surviving cause he does this all the time but Keston came home alive, in great shape, and smelly from the 50 miler. They even made it home a day early and surprised us. So no one won the bet of when they would be home because we thought it would be late Saturday afternoon - evening.

Keston crossing the river.

Never let the kid hold the camera - this is what comes out of it. Who wouldn't love this face?

Taking a much needed break.

Hiking in the bear grass and vetch.

The grand suite in the mountains.

The whole group at the top - they had to split into two groups because there were so many, so the Priests started at one end and the Deacons and Teachers started at the other end. They met in the middle.

What happened to using a leaf - give it up for Charmin On the Go. And it's not what you think in the blue sack - thats the shovel. Again leave the camera in the hands of the kid and this is what you get.

At the end they had fun on the swinging foot bridge. Notice Keston's lovely attire. He forgot his pants so the whole time he wore his swimsuit over his long underwear.

They made it to the end. Always beautiful in the Bob Marshall Wilderness. Val would live there if he could.