Friday, October 31, 2008

Book Fair!

Yesterday I got the opportunity to help at Andie's book fair. Now a little background. I have not worked outside the home in almost eight years. I am cash register illiterate, and I gets flustered early around my peers. SOOO...I got there early so I could have time to learn whatever it was I would need to learn. The lady that was there before me ran through cash register instruction 101, very quickly and then left. Three minutes later the entire population of mothers and their children showed up, I even thought I heard different languages being spoken so they may have come from out of state or out of country...just because I was there.

Everything was going swimmingly until a lady and her two kids brought up 5 books or so. After ringing up her total she decided that they needed to put some of them back. WHAT!!! I don't know how to take books off the ticket, just add them on, that is what you are supposed to do, add books. So I think, ok, cancel the order. It was at that moment that every person in the Western United States got in line to purchase their books, and the same moment that the cash register decided to have a temper tantrum. I tried everything I could think of to make the stupid thing work, but no matter what I did it just kept freaking out.

By this time children were crying, mothers were threatening and I could hear their thoughts. "What is wrong with this woman, can't she see that we need to be somewhere else?" Somewhere in the deep recesses of my mine I heard that little voice saying, "Cut your losses and get the heck out of here!" Yet I continued on. NOW the $25.50 order had topped out at $75.50, and I was sweating so much that me, the table, and cash register were floating in a big, fat, slimy puddle.

Enter Dacia Alba, the raven haired beauty with all the answers. She slopped through my puddle and grandly reached over with her manicured fingernails, and shut the register off! Under her very capable hands the register purred to a start and gladly followed her every command, we were saved!

After that the machine ran smoothly and when Mary arrived we figured up a rough total before putting in any numbers so moms could decided if they were willing to pay the amount before we entered it in. The dragon behaved after that, and when my hour was up, I was relived. However, somewhere in a PTO meeting this coming week they will say, NEVER let Anna-Liisa, help at the book fair again!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Life Lessons

In my struggles this week I have thought a lot about life lessons. Jenna is learning to pull herself up to things. Sometime when she lets go she falls, and then she cries. She is learning a lesson and it has hard, and she must not understand why she has to fall, and why it hurts. At seven months old this is a life lesson. Casey is learning about potty training. He is learning that if you don't make it to the bathroom in time there is a mess, luckily in his case I get to clean it up. :) Tyson is learning about his body, and how things work, and how sometimes things don't work like they should so we need to modify a bit, and now he wares glasses. It isn't always fun, but he knows that it is a must. Andie is learning about life, about school subjects, friends, missing people and change. All of these things at their respective ages are hard and makes them struggle some times. But they have a shield, a bumper to come to, and that is their mom and dad, me and Johnathan.

But then I think about myself, and the things I struggle with, yesterday, today and in the future, and wish that my only lesson was how to walk, or use the bathroom. And then I get the privilege of know others who struggle, just as much as I do, or even more. My friend Bonnie is laying an a hospital bed because her legs were crushed by a car. My friends Jana, Jenn, Tina, and so many like them struggle with infertility, some with no luck at all. I have other friends who struggle with illness, lack of money, job loss, and sadness.

In the past two weeks I watched as people came together so help and love each other. I saw comfort and friendship, dedication and trust, forgiveness and selflessness. But the one thing I saw most clearly was our Heavenly Father and his mercy, love, and fatherly kindness. In a way we are all learning to walk, to develop and maintain our bodies, and to struggle.

Through Pain comes great Relive,
from Sadness comes much Happiness.
Sorrow leads to Peace,
and Friendship leads to Love.

Life lesson learned, our Heavenly Father is the buffer we need to weather our trials. Friends are the supporters who make it possible. Family will love you unconditionally and pray for you, and strength can only be gained through those very trials we hope to live without.

Home is Where the Hat is!

It has been an emotional few weeks for me. I think it is lack of sleep and maybe the cool weather, but it has sure got me thinking. As most of you know we moved from the beautiful Bitterroot valley a few months ago and I have been constantly amazed at how much I miss it. While I have enjoyed being closer to my family I have struggled daily with the move. So this morning after looking at some other blogs I realized why. The valley is a beautiful place, the mountains stunning, the surroundings comfortable. Every morning it looks and feels like it does when you camp, the rich wet pine smell and the deer grazing in your back yard. Incomparable in my opinion. But that isn't what I miss the most, it is our friends.

Three years ago we moved into a little pink house on Sunset Ave. Our back windows faced the mountains and the view was breathtaking every day. The road ended just behind our house, and it was quiet and safe. Andie learned to ride her bike outside our front door, and the kids and the dog would play for hours in the fenced back yard. But we knew no one, and it was a little scary. Then something wonderful happened. We went to church, and the whole ward loved us instantly, within a week we had callings and friends. Friends!! Something that we had never experienced before. Coming from a collage ward, where no one was interested in talking with you, then suddenly it was like we were indispensable.

In the past three months I have miss most, the Sunday dinners, the impromptu FHE's, the dutch oven dinners in the mountains, camping, girls night out, play dates at the park, baby showers, shopping, Super One, Naps, phone calls, and support.

About a year ago we were driving into Missoula, and Johnathan asked me how I felt about moving when he was ready to go back to school. I feel the same way today and I did then, I never wanted to leave! They say that, "home is where the hat is." Well my hat is somewhere in the Bitterroot Valley.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Halloween Carnival

We had a good time tonight at Andies Halloween Carnival. We got everyone all dressed up, except Jenna, and my parents came up to go with us. Johnathan, Grandma and the kids went through the spook ally and they had a great time. There was a lot to do, and after dinner we went to it. Our last stop was for pictures, and then we were ready to come home! We wanted to give Grandma and Grandpa a HUGE thank you for coming with us and helping out, it would have been crazy without you guys there. Thankfully they didn't give out any candy, just some toys, and that I can handle, we are going to be getting plenty of candy next week. The kids are all looking forward to dressing up again, and Johnathan is looking forward to raiding the kids bags for his favorite candy!

Thursday, October 23, 2008


Andie is so glad to be back in school! I never thought I would have a child who would want to go to school so much, but she really loves it. We have been working on math together and we have come up with some really fun songs to remember the sums. Andie had to take a test and get all the problems done in 2 minutes, she was able to complete it by singing the songs in her head. I sure wish school had come so easily to me! She is also enjoying every minute on the bus, it is fun to watch her get on every day, she sits out and waits and then waves to me out the window. I can't believe that she is so big, it didn't seem like that long ago that she was Jenna's age! Time sure flies when you are having fun!


Tyson loving Gymnastics. I was watching him yesterday and he was working on cartwheels, it was amazing! I can't believe how strong he it. He is also probably my happiest kid. I was trying to get a picture of him doing a somersault, but we were laughing to hard because he would start and I would press the button to take the picture, but it wouldn't take tell after he was done. I got a lot of pictures of his feet. He has also mastered saying his alphabet, he is really smart, and has the energy of 100 people. I am really glad that we were able to get him into "Nastics."

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Casey is learning to go potty in the big boy potty. Last week he went into the bathroom all by himself and took his diaper off then told me he needed to poop. That was that, now he his wearing underpants and is doing really good. He is also exploring all things big kid. The older kids were climbing trees and Casey wanted to also, so I got him up there and he took off. I didn't want him that high, but he didn't care, as long as he could be "big." We are excited for him to go to Sunbeams in January, it just seemed like yesterday when we finally talked him into liking nursery. They just grow up way to fast!


Just thought I would update on all the kids, starting with youngest first. Jenna is 7 months 3 weeks now and moving like a crazy person. She loves to go up and down the two steps from the upper to lower living rooms. She also can pull herself up to just about anything and will climb onto, into, over and around anything that gets in her way. She is busy, busy, buys! I also think she is going to get her first tooth soon, fun for me, and hopefully when that happens she will start sleeping a bit better than the last few nights! Anyway, she is growing like a weed and we love her!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Back to normal...sort of.

Andie is back in school and the house is calming down. Tyson is going to Gymnastics still and loves it, although he practices some pretty scary things in my front room, like front flips! Casey decided all on his own last week that he wanted to ware underpants which is ok with me, and he is doing VERY well. Jenna is a movin and a shaken, and can get anywhere in the house now in five minutes flat! Johnathan is working hard and is thankful he has a job, and I continue to wait on the Agent to see if she will accept my manuscript submission. That is the normal part of my day.

The abnormal part of my day starts with a seven month old who is trying to walk. A seven year old who acts like a thirteen year old. A five year old who is doing FRONT FLIPS in my living room, and a three year old, who is potty training himself.

I am constantly amazed at how different every one of my children are. Once I think I have things figured out, even basic things, the next child comes along and changes my mind. I guess being a mommy will never be a truly normal experience. I don't get up and go to a job that is the same everyday, I get to get up and go to a job that has surprises every second. I never know if my day is going to end the same as it did the day before. So I guess I can say that the abnormalities of being a mother are pretty normal, and no matter what my idea of normal is, it is going to change, every second of every day!

Harvest Break

I am convinced that someone came up with the concept of Harvest Break so that they could have help with, obviously, Harvest! This is a good and noble idea, and the kids love it because they don't have school. But let me fill you in on the week and a half I had with my seven year old home...NOT helping with anything, least alone harvest.

First off, Andie loves school, so she spent the entire time asking WHY she had to be home in the first place. I told her that if she wanted I could drop her off at the front door and she could hang out at the school all day, then I would be back to pick her up at 2:30. She though this was a great idea, and so did I the second, third, fourth, and subsequent days that she was here. Now I knew that I couldn't do that because I would get in trouble, child abandonment, or something, but by the end of the first week, a night in jail seemed like a trip to paradise.

The boys generally play pretty well together, but when Andie is home it is a whole new ballgame. She will play with one and not the other. She demands that she get the computer, or the toy that someone else is playing with. Over all she is a royal pain in the neck. On top of that she was hungry ALL the time. Every fifteen minutes she was asking for something to eat. If she is like this at school I feel sorry for her teacher. Finally I had to come up with projects for her to do so that she would leave the boys alone and not think she was hungry all the time. I knew that she was board, and so I tried to give her the benefit of doubt, but I am still glad that she is back at school.

So I think what I am saying is, Harvest Break is a bad idea if you are not harvesting anything, so I think that next year when this time rolls around again I will send Andie out to harvest our garden. Then, she will not be board, and she can eat whatever she likes, and the boys will leave her alone, because, who wants to spend a week and a half harvesting anything!


I was working at the table when I heard a large crash! I rushed into the living room and demanded to know what had happened. Of course it was not ones fault...yeah right! There was a huge hole in the picture window. I checked behind the couch to find a pot lid...yes I said a metal pot lid. Apparently Tyson was "throwing the Frisbee," right through our front window. I called Johnathan and let him know that Tyson was only contributing to the family budget, isn't that nice! Luckily my husband is amazing and he was able to replace the pane of glass himself and it only cost us the amount of the glass, $20. I guess I need to realize it isn't the first, or the last thing Tyson is going to be contributing to the cause.

Run for your lives!!!

The other day I was in the living room writing, and I noticed that the boys were being very quiet. I had seen them go into the back, down to the bathroom a few seconds earlier and so I decided to check and see what they had been up too. As I entered the kitchen I could smell...what was MY hot chocolate! Sure enough they had been eating out of the hot chocolate tin. I called them back up and this is how the conversation went.

Me: "Who did this?"
Tyson: "Not us!"
Me: "Oh Yes it was...This is MY hot chocolate, not yours!"
Tyson: "Casey, RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!!!"

I had no response because I didn't want them to see that I wanted to laugh right out loud!

Kids say the funnies things.