Friday, March 26, 2010

March Madness?

I have to laugh at all of the HUB-BUB over college basketball! Madness it right.

We started the month off with a super fun Elder's Quorum party. HOLY COW. Can you have that much fun at an ELder's Q. party? Is is legal? We played Rock Band and had Fresh Mex Food. Stick a fork in me... I am good. We got to know a few members of the ward a little better and on a more personal level. Had lots of laughs. For sure need to have times like this more often.

In January we get together with friends and sit down with our calendars to plan out our Year worth of extracurricular. On the books for March, we planned a snowmachine outing at the cabin. After much craziness, teacher parent conferences and a last minute temple order, we finally made to Island park. There is very little snow on the roads but still enough to sled around on. Our kids love this weekend. Mady and Gage both got to ride sleds by themselves this time. Too much fun. Aside from all of the cooking and cleaning, there is still plenty of fun to be had.

On the 20th, Gage received his first set of stitches following a minor run-in with his old bike. He has spent the last week over at the jumps behind our house... jumping, sliding & all other manner of craziness. On this particular Saturday, he was parking his bike, tripped and landed on the end of the handle bars. That was all it took. We spent the next 2 hours at the urgent care sewing up his cheek. He was all good with it - as long as he could get a remote control truck out of the deal!

This has been the crazyiest month for school. There have been tons of half days, days off and then SPRING BREAK of course the last week! Did we make plans? Ohhhh. YEs. We made plans. Plans to clean this crazy house. When I was growing up, My mother would tear the house apart twice a year. The minute the weather would break in the spring she would bust out the bucket of amonia water and the cleaning rags. I am not quite so regular with it , but due to the neglect the last year, it is time. We have tried to rip into at least one room each day and spring clean it. Washing walls, dusting, vacuuming, redecorating, washing bedding, etc. We have accomplished a lot, but it has not been without knashing of teeth! The kids hate it and think we are for sure the worst parents ever. They have still played with friends every day, stayed up late every night, been to a movie, have been shopping, went skiing at Pomerelle and have had time to just breathe. I am sure they will only remember the work they had to do - and when they grow up and have their own homes, I am sure they will all do spring cleaning on Spring Break too!

February FinaLLy!

According to the calendar, this was a fairly MILD month. THe weather of course is still chilly. We still have snow on the ground that hasn't melted in forever due to colder temps.

Brennan is playing basketball on a Rec team. Again, he does not love it. Derek is assistant coaching. He does not love it. Hmmm. Why are we doing it?

Mady is in a continual fix trying to Juggle her social calendar with dance and Cheer classes. This semester, she is trying Jazz/Ballet, because there were no hip hop options. Hmmm... I do not know if I like it. We will see. Ballet is one of the oldest forms of dance. Traditional. Graceful. BORING! I pray we make it through.

Before we knew it, it was already Valentine's weekend. We went to the cabin with dear friends to celebrate- our 2nd annual sweetheart sledding extravaganza. I think this is by far my most favorite weekend of the year. I do love my children, but this is for sure one weekend that I do NOT feel guilty about leaving them with a sitter - (and I swear they appreciate us more when they are without us for a few minutes) The weather was stormy but still good enough to go sledding. Thanks to the Simonsen's again for their navigation skills and knowledge of the trails. One day we are hoping to be familiar enough with them that we recognize where we are:) I still laugh at our pathetic movie projector and makeshift quilted screen setup. What were we thinking? My eyes still ache from squinting to make it seem more focused :) Maybe next year we can celebrate Valentine's day somewhere warm... with a real theater room??

Right after Valentine's day was my 40th birthday. To be quite honest, it seemed like any other day, aside from all of the wise cracks & crazy aging gifts... Steph got me the darn-dest sack of old lady items I have ever seen. It kind of looks like the crap we hauled up to Quailridge for Grandma Belva! Yeeesh! :)

Spent the day doing literally nothing important. ok... maybe I did. I took Chloee to Dance. She loved it, we had a bonding moment. although I have never been a ballerina, I love that she is having a great time and is excited to be with other sweet little 3 year olds that are having as much fun as she is....

I spent time with my sweet husband at lunch who has been with me through thick and thin this last year...

I took Madelyn to Cheer after school - it is fun to see her excel at something that I can only do on accident.... (things like the splits and stuff...) sheeesh!

Our family went to dinner tonight @ Ruby Tuesdays.... I was again reminded that it is not a bad thing to take your kids out in public once in a while so they don't forget how to use good manners and to be on their best behavior. Yeah, it is 60 minutes of pure chinese torture to sit there with them all doing whatever it is they do.... but important.

After dinner, we all went to icecream at Farrs with Steph's family... again, was reminded of an important lesson, how important it is to have a FIRE EXTINGUISHER on hand when having birthday cake for anyone over 10 years old. Damn.... that was a lot of candles. Pretty sure we could have set the smoke alarm off when we blew them out.- and it took 3 of us to blow them all out. Sick. The cake top is in shreds after removing all of those candles.

I did get a new laptop out of the whole torturous day... so it was not all bad... oh and a couple of liters of Pepsi. Only a true friend will bring you Chocolate Ganache cheesecake and pepsi for your 40th birthday :) Tiffani is pretty swell. So the day was not entirely the pits ;).

On the 20th Noelle and I took picture for a Clogging team. I did not know that clogging was so popular. Lots of kids. Lots of cute costumes. Lots of laughter... There is never a dull moment with Noelle. My sides nearly split at times laughing at her...

It seems no matter how we try, we just can't keep our house clean lately. My kids are a whirlwind of messmaking mass! They THRASH everything they look at and leave it in a state of shreds! That little poem that mentions "One day you will miss my little hand prints" CHA! AS IF. As if there were only handprints. What about all clutter and craziness? That, I will not miss.

So, I have decided that I am grateful that I am not a cleaning lady by profession. I am happy to fill in and help out in a pinch - Steph and I went to clean an apartment today after the cleaning lady quit. (Yeh. GOod move sister!) That place was scarry! We needed a stick of DYNAMITE to clear it out first so we could even start cleaning. Again, there is never a dull moment when doing anything with Steph! Is it just that nothing is funny at my house? I didn't think my life was dull or lacked humor. Apparently it is. This woman needs to be on stand up house wives - totally hilarious... for sure laughter is the best medicine while cleaning something that calibur of GROSS! Laugh or you will end up CRYING!!

I took Basketball team photos for my nephew Dallas on the 23rd. There team is undefeated so of course they think they are smokin' hot studs! Funny. 'Took some pretty cute shotz, action shotz for sports posters. They are going to love them... but what 10 year old doesn't love to look at themself doing something totally cool like a lay-up or jump shot?

The 25th was our ward skiing party. Did we have hot dogs and chili you ask... (that is a joke at our house...) Why yes, they did. Of course we had fun skiing. I am always reminded of how BLOODY OUT OF SHAPE I AM when I ski - beginning with putting my boots on. SHEEESH! Then my knees are screaming by the end of the night. WOrth it? Of course it is. Chloee skiied with Derek tonight for the first time. We thought she would be a whining mess and want to go back to the lodge after 5 minutes. SHE LOVED IT! She skiied most of the night. Amazing.
Gage is improving and BOMBS is down the hill. He gets really sick of waiting for me at the bottom. I am in no hurry to get to the bottom. I do not need to be reminded of what it feels like to "YARD SALE" it on the hill. I am good with moderate slow and steady s curves. I am completely comfortable with the fact that my 6, 9 & 12 year olds can out ski me. Most especially, I am grateful to be able to walk in the morning after it all :)

The next night, we were invited to a good old fashioned dinner party at the Simonsen Home. We are truly blessed to have such great friends & such great memories of fun times. Cooking is FOR SURE an ART FORM and a lot of work and planning! There is beauty in great tasting food & beautiful presentation, a table set with china, crystal and personalized place cards! She is an amazing cook! (totally need to raid her recipe box for Chicken Cordon Bleu, twice baked potatoes and PEACH CHEESECAKE!) Oh my! LIfe is GOOD :)

spring crafties!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Happy New Year 2010!

Again, please note that I am recollecting memories written on the calendar in order to write this entry. I promise to be better for March :).
Our New Year was most uneventful - THANK HEAVEN! We spent the day at home, watched a few movies, did some laundry How great is that? I am pretty sure that 10 years ago I would have been pretty BUMBED not to have smokin' hot plans for New Years Eve. Derek made call ahead reservations at Texas Roadhouse. It of course was amazing food. - anything that I don't have to cook is out of this world.

Monday marked our first day back to school after the break. The kids of course did not want to get up. We were up late and slept in nearly every day. Totally love that. We are all night owls, except Gage-R. He falls asleep the second his head hits the pillow, unless he is watching Fineas and Ferb on Disney. He stays awake to see what they are building and then falls asleep :) I am sure when my kids are grown and gone, I will be sad , but right now, it makes me crazy that my room is the HUB of our house. My bed is where we hang out, watch movies, take naps, read scriptures, have family prayer, and where my little babies fall asleep for the night before they are transferred to their beds. Alot has happened in that bed over the last 14 years. WOW. All Hail the California King Pillow TOP!

I went to Lunch with some dear friends on TGIF. Ladies Lunch Out. On the way home, after a most enjoyable meal and amazing uninterrupted conversation... I found myself wondering if these incredible women know how grateful I am for their constant support & friendship. We have been scrapbook chicas for many years, and are really the only ones who truly know how much money was spent on scrapbook supplies in the craft room. SHHHHH. Nobody else needs to know.

We scheduled more Dance photos for the Rec Center in conjunction with the dress rehearsal prior to the recital. IT was a ZOO, but as always, we were grateful for the opportunity. With every photo shoot I think we get a little more organized, a little better at our poses, and our pictures are little bit cuter also. WOW there are some really darling little girls in this city.

Along with the day to day HUB-BUB I have been working on 3 different temple orders for Enrichment meetings. I totally love this, but wonder for how long. I am out of practice staying awake all night so my day time is crazy trying to juggle more. One of these days when I am like 90 or something, I will wish I had things to do to keep me busy.

The 12th was Mady's Dance Recital. She LOVES DANCE & CHEER! We love to watch her. Upon arrival, Chloee asks me, "Mom did you bring my dancing clothes?" I am saying to her... " UHMMM no, not tonight. She asked me several times when it was her turn to get up there and do her dance show. Hmmm I thought to myself... if you run up there during a performance, I will die! We were able to contain her through the recital, but she has bugged me since to take a dance class.

For the first time in the History of the Leslie Cabin, we did not go there for Martin Luther King HOliday. Yeah. It was great. I can't figure out why I am so far behind all of the time... because we never stay home.... that's why. It felt amazing! Every Saturday this month the kids and I have ripped into at least one room to get some deep cleaning done. This weekend, we did the kitchen. We had everyone on a dust rag wiping cabinets and baseboards. Amazing how fast it happens when we all pitch in. All of a sudden the hardwood started to get a little slippery so the kids were sliding in their socks... of course having a great time, while the rest of us nearly killed ourselves. After about 20 minutes, I finally realized why the floor was getting slick. GAGE WAS SPRAYING HIS SOCKS WITH FURNITURE POLISH AND THEN MAKING A RUN FOR IT DOWN THE HALL. Leave it to Gage to think of that one! Needless to say, the floor was slick for at least a week.

We had our ward conference on the 31st. As a general rule, this is uneventful for me, but our Bishop gave a talk and I actually felt inspired by a comment in his talk. Many people know how slow the construction business has been. This has been a real trial for me. We have been sooo busy for soooo long that I just didn't think we would ever get a break. Well, we have had that break. We have not had a closing since July. It is only because Derek has always managed & budgeted our money so well that we are surviving the economy. Bishop spoke about how many righteous, faithful people had lost their jobs, or would be loosing jobs in the future but that we would all see Miracles. Those miracles might not be in the form of a better job, or a job with better benefits, but that the miracles might be in our ability to learn to live with less and to better manage what we have. This is totally the Leslie's. It has really been a difficult lesson for me, but I am learning it. We have all made some lifestyle adjustments and are adapting. I am grateful to have been taught the importance of food storage, managing debt, saving money for a rainy day, and that our home is paid for! That is a great feeling. oh, and it never hurts to have your own "School of Boating", just in case you need to earn a little bit of cash on the side ( This was a joke made by our good friend the Stake President... he made reference to Holli's school of Boating in his talk, and that my philosophy was that if you aren't having fun, you aren't going fast enough... Oddly enough, some thought he was serious. We can always count on him to keep things lively :)

January has come and gone and I am wondering if I am going to survive the cold weather & lack of sunshine - or my pasty skin tone, rather. Mom and dad are in Nevada, soaking up the rays. We are just here...grateful for a slower pace.