Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Another Kadan moment...

that makes me question how to be a good mom. Kadan has been pushing the limits lately. One limit that I refuse to go unpunished is hitting or biting. So, after he thought is would be funny to slap Addy and then wake her up by biting her I was at my whits end. What in the world am I to do to teach him that violence is not funny? Do I fight violence with violence and resort to spankings? Do I put him in longer timeouts in his room? The spanking idea just did not seem right and time outs seemed too easy. During my contemplation a thought came to my mind -- What can be a beneficial type of punishment? Addy deserves to be compensated for her pain. Then I had an Ah-Ha moment -- starting tonight, Kadan will become Addy's servant for the day. It started off with rubbing her feet with lotion tonight before she went to bed. Tomorrow he has plans to feed her breakfast in bed and clean for her.

A few minutes into the "service" Addy asked for some money, "Mom, I need some money."

Me "Why?"

"Because I need to give it to Kadan for doing all this nice stuff for me." I then talked to her that service was for free and he did not need to get paid. She then said, "then can I decide what he does for me? Maybe he can hand out presents for us." How nice is this -- she is thinking of fun things that Kadan can do to serve her. Would he return the favor if she was to serve him?

Then a few moments after my conversation with Addy, Kadan said, "Since Addy is making it fun and easy on me, I think I am going to serve her for 2 days." -- Yeah!! Victory!

As a funny side note -- As we were talking, he did make a list of things he would not do. "Mom, I'm not going to fix her hair since I hurt her when the brush gets stuck. And what I am NOT going to do no matter what is wash her body when she is taking a bath."

Okay -- I can live with that. Let's see if this punishment is victorious.

One of my FAVORITE things...

is singing and boogieing down in the car. Today, driving home from the valley, we were stuck in one of the most horrible snow packed, icy roads I have ever experience. Of course, even driving 20 mph with 4-wheel drive did not make me feel safe since we were still slippy and slide-y. On the verge of freaking out, I plugged in my ipod, turned on Tia's 2007 Christmas melodies (thank you Tia for saving me again!) and started singing Jingle Bells. Soon, Addy piped in then the whole car was full of my children's voices singing and dancing and clapping and laughing. We sang all the way home, laughing all the way "Ha, Ha, Ha." Gotta LOVE these little special moments with your children.

Here are some fun things that the kids were saying:

Addy -- "Mom, look at the trees. They are all white. They look like they are covered in Christmas ornaments."

Kadan -- "Mom, do you have any food? Can you roll down the window? We need to throw some food out the window so the animals will not be hungry. We always need to be nice to the animals."

Hunter -- (kinda random comment) "Mom, do catfish eat mice?" Me -- "I'm not quite sure." "Well, Mom, they are called Cat -- fish so since they are like cats and cats like to eat mice then catfish must like to eat mice too." -- I just chuckled.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Thankful Thanksgiving...

This year is our first Thanksgiving back in Arizona. I think it was the first ever for BO and Addy was a little baby the last time we were here. Since both Ian's and my family live in the valley (Mesa area) we were able to eat until our bellies were completely full and we were so tired that most of us crashed on the couch for a few hours.
Thanksgiving started off early with sounds of kitchen clatter at 6 am. It was a blast cooking with Brittny, Danny-boy, Aunt Ginger, Ian, Missy and Sherida (young and younger). Now I know why Thanksgiving is such fun with family -- you don't even realize that you are working because you are enjoying each other's company so much. We also had great entertainment as we watched Mr. Ortho Surgeon (AKA Ian) set his cousin's broken finger -- BTW, Ty was a CHAMP!

After a rushed eating we headed to my family's house. I love Thanksgiving southern style with baked mac-n-cheese and sweet potato souffle (a secret family recipe). The day was nice and relaxing.

One of my favorite parts is looking at all the Black Friday ads and then going to a family friendly movie. This year we saw Bolt -- gotta say that I really liked it.

So, what am I Thankful for -- my health, my children's health, food on the table, my family, friends (far and near), a clean house, kisses from my kids, sunny days, family scripture study, beautiful music and the Savior.

Friday, December 12, 2008

"Mom, is being a rockstar hard work?"

Kadan says to me during dinner.

"I bet they make like $100 for each concert. But there is one problem; you are away from your family for a long time. But, I really want to be a rock star."

He is so cute about it. You just HAVE to see him practice with his air-microphone and his eyes-closed head banging.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Welcome Miss Sage....

to our family. We are excited to introduce our little puppy. Just a day before Thanksgiving we took the kids to the airport to get a big surprise. Not telling them where we were going they were so excited guessing what we are doing.

Hunter said, "Are we going on a plane?"

"No, not a plane ride," I said. "Something much better than that."

Kadan said, "this place doesn't look very fun. Are you sure it is going to be awesome?"

"I know, I know," said Addy, "we are going on a roller coaster ride."

"Cooool" said Kadan and Hunter in unison. Then Bo said, "me too. I want to go."
Just then Ian turns with a little blue kennel in hand. "Look inside" he said. "Look what we have for you."

"A puppy!!" They all said, jumping up and down and clapping.
Each one took turns holding her and loving her. "What do you want to name her?"
Addy -- Lilly
Bo -- Sparkles
Kadan -- Madison
Ian -- Sage
Hunter -- Ice Sage
And Sage she became. I think she looks more like a Lilly but Ian wouldn't have it -- the name needed to be more tough since she is going to be a bird dog.

After we were walking back to the car Hunter turned to me and said, "This is real. It can't be a dream. This is real right? But is really feels like I dream. I am so excited."
She sure is lots of fun and fits perfectly into the family. She cuddles and plays and hangs with us just fine. Of course there are the nighttime toileting and nipping and occasional puddles on the floor but she's definitely a keeper.
Addy has taken the position of Mom -- she loves her and feeds her and takes her for a walk. Sage follows Bo around all day long just waiting to pounce on her when she is not watching. Annie holding the puppy like a baby -- she would not relinquish her even when the kids kept asking and asking.Hunter and cousin Jessica (who have had a special bond since Hunter was a newborn) -- these two played and laughed with little Sage.
Grandpa PJ cuddled the puppy for hours. He even took her with him on his Thanksgiving nap -- when I went in to peek at them she was cozied up right next to him as he snored (so funny).

Hunter is protector and Kadan is the playmate of Sage. They can totally get her wound up!

Monday, December 8, 2008

brotherly love...

Every day I am grateful for my littles ones. Just the other day I found a poem that I wrote when Kadan was just barely 1 and hunter was only 3. It was a poem to describe there personalities and how grateful I was to have 2 boys that loved each other even though they have such different spirits. Hunter the peacemaker and Kadan the warrior each look at the world so differently. Yet, often I think that because of Hunter, Kadan has grown to be a spiritual and caring boy while because of Kadan, Hunter has learned to be strong and to love life.

I look at them and think, "Wow, they are so handsome and so fun and so RAMBUNCTIOUS and so totally and completely wonderful." They are best buds, mom's prince charmings, and all around crazy, active and fun boys.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

I will miss dear Elder Wirthlin...

I just found out that your dear Elder Wirthlin passed away late Monday night. I vividly recall one of his last general conference addresses where he stood giving one of the most heart felt talks I have ever heard. Trembling almost to the point of collapse, this regal man stood and bore his testimony to the world. He shared a message of hope and love. Quoting his mother he said the words that helped him though the tough times was "come what may, and LOVE it" meaning even if bad things happen, pick yourself up and enjoy the gifts you have been given in life. I am going to adopt that principle -- just LOVE your way out of sadness and turmoil.

I have always enjoyed hearing him speak -- in softness he shares messages of hope and peace. He just beamed kindness and gentleness despite his broad shoulders and football physique. I am grateful that I have been able to be touched by his spirit.

'Tis the Season...

I just love the holidays. Eating lots of yummies, tons of holiday parties, SHOPPING, family time, secret acts of service, cuddling by the fire, and making Christmas cards.

A few months ago we drove past this dilapidated barn and I just knew that this is where we were going to take our pictures this year. I am so excited how they turned out since this was my 1st time using a timer and tripod. The kids had lots of fun and in under 30 minutes we were finished with smiles still on our faces.

Monday, November 24, 2008

We had the most amazing family home evening...

last night (I think that the Lord is blessing me with these moments to keep me going). As I read a child's book about the birth and life of Christ and then showed a little clip from the video "Reflections of Christ" my children sat reverently and were actively engaged in the stories. Hunter, with his amazing ability to memorize, would tell the stories vividly while the other children quietly listened. Kadan and Addy shared in the responsibility of holding the book and turning the pages, being totally conscious of each other -- making sure that each had their own turn. After watching the video clip, I asked the children what was their favorite thing about Jesus. This is what they said:

Hunter: Kind and faithful
Kadan: Peaceful and safe
Addy: Nice and helpful
Annalyse: Friend and died
Me: Strong and brave (there are so many words to describe the Savior, but these were the first two attributes that came to mind -- I thought that it was interesting that I would choose such words and am grateful that He has provided a perfect example of who we should be in all aspects of our lives)

The video that we watched is available on You-tube (I still cannot figure out how to download the video directly into my blog) so if you would like to watch it, here is the website.


Saturday, November 22, 2008

Free Freight -- what a deal!

Hi all, Just wanted to let you know -- one of my favorite furniture companies, Britishtraditions.com, is having free freight on orders until Nov 26. It is a smashing deal (since freight is so expensive). For those living in areas other than AZ -- they will ship to your house (with an additional $75 fee). Check out their website. They have amazing things. If you would like to place an order, just let me know soon and I will order it for you. Thanks.


Thursday, November 20, 2008

Better late than never....


I put off Kadan long enough. He had been begging me to carve pumpkins since the first week of October. Well, by the end of the 1st week of November we finally carved our pumpkins. Better late than never, right?

Hunter carved a traditional pumpkin, Addy carved a monkey and Kadan carved a snake. Bo was the "guts" remover and helped light all the candles. It was lots of fun.

Catching up on some soccer moments...

this year. The boys had a blast in soccer. Kadan says that soccer and football are now his favorite sports. Hunter chose tennis and football but says he still likes all sports like soccer and tennis (just like Hunter to make sure that nothing is left out). Kadan was Mr. Striker -- scoring at least 1/2 of the goals each game. Hunter was defense extraordinaire -- it was nice to see him being more aggressive and stopping the forward from scoring.This picture tells it all -- my aggressive, stop-at-nothing son!Kadan made sure that I got a picture of him making a goal. He would look up and me and say "mom, take a picture. I am going to get a goal now." And so he did.Of course, after his excellent shot, he had to turn and show me how many goals he had already.After the game, the kids' favorite part was going under the tunnel.Kadan with his excellent coach.

Hunter with some of his team -- The Red Ninjas.Hunter handled the ball so well this last game and almost got a goal. Nice job buddy!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Some beautiful and totally amazing photos...

of Christ were just recently completed by a local Arizona photographer Mark Maybry and crew. He has been showing his work at exhibits in the western US and just published a hardbound book, DVD and CD for his work. It is a MUST see. You can check out the website Refections of Christ at the following website: http://www.reflectionsmg.com/reflections-of-christ-exhibit.php

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

"I now what a PT is, Mom"

Hunter said to me after he heard Ian and I talking about PT (AKA physical therapy).

"Really? What does PT mean?" I said.

"Well, you know mom, "P" stands for pregnant and "T" stands for teacher so if you put it together it means that you have a pregnant teacher" Hunter replied in a completely serious tone.

Giggle, giggle! Oh, how FUN! I love how smart and creative little ones can be.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Who likes cottage decor?

I do, I do!

I found another awesome company and just love getting shipments from them. Their name is K & K Interiors and they are from Sandusky, Ohio. I told my sales rep that we must meet for business on the Millieum Roller Coaster -- she just laughed.
Here are some copies of their catalog and I must admit this is just a little glimpse into what they have and I LOVE it ALL.

Where is Russ when I need him?

In Idaho of course!

So, I have a new goal -- to make healthy food from scratch just like Dana Ellsworth. Well, yesterday I tried my hand in several recipes from Martha Stewart. Boy-o-boy was I in trouble. Not only did I not understand some of the instructions but I did not have a ricer (BTW -- now that I looked them up and know what they are, I just HAVE to get one). But, with some improvising I was doing quite good.

If you can believe it, I was trying to make gnoccie from scratch -- yep, I am a gluten for punishment. But I thought to myself, "Hey, there are are less than 10 ingredients and it looks a lot like making rolls so I should be just fine." Oh man -- it was a little more difficult than rolls. I did everything just as Martha directed (with modifications since I did not have a ricer -- thank goodness for rotary cheese graters) but left out one major ingredient -- the FLOUR! In the ingredient list it mentioned 2 cups of flour but in the instructions all it said was to lightly dust the potato mixture with flour. Well, long story short -- water + potatoes = HUGE mess and pot of water boiling over.

It is times like this that I miss calling Russ up in the middle of dinner for him to help me step-by-step to create yummy dishes.

BTW -- Russ and Tia -- what is your yummy mashed potato recipe?

To Stacie and Kendra...

I had to change my email/identity to get in and now I am locked out of your blogs -- can you allow me access with my new email address:

jenbrimhall73@gmail.com (this is my email address for blogging only). I still have my jenbrimhall@gmail.com as the one I use everyday if you want to send me a message.

Thanks gals!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

This is an awesome find...

I just love this artwork by Raymond Designs. He has taken photos and pictures from well know artists like Dale Parsons and has created a fantastic look. I am hoping to become a retailer for them. Here is just a sneak peek. Isn't it a funny coincidence that their established picture is of my last name -- FUN!