Tuesday, November 04, 2014

So apparently it's been a year.

A year since I posted here.  Really?  Hm.

So a quick update on us.

Bon just celebrated his 35th birthday.  He has been traveling more and more lately and in the midst of his traveling, he has lost two pairs of dress pants.  So we went shopping and got him some new pants and shirts.  He has been going to Canada, Chicago, Oklahoma as of recent and I'm not sure when his next trip will be.  We always like having him home though.

This season, he coached Ty's soccer team and their last game is this Saturday.  He said it's good timing because the boys are starting to get grumpy.  :)

He is still Elders Quorum President and although his counselors are good, he still goes to meetings and has things to do within his calling.  Plus the High Councilman over our ward likes to think he's in charge and that makes Bon's eye twitch.  It's still weird to me every time someone calls him President Carter though.

I am doing well.  And as normal I have too much that I want to get done, so I start on one thing and then don't finish it.  I'm slowly trying to declutter our house, but I think it reproduces at night.  I need to stop being so lenient with what I keep.

Right now I've been working on getting the wallpaper down in the kitchen.  I was going to repaint, but the corners were peeling up and I peeled it up and lo and behold, there are two layers of wallpaper on.  Plus a border.  Plus they papered on unprimed walls, which has led to a few choice words and will lead to me basically refinishing the wall before I can paint.  So the project has taken longer than I ever wanted.  But I am going to paint the walls a color called Mayapple Yellow (by glidden), so it will be bright and look good with the white cabinets we have.

My calling right now is Primary Chorister and I LOVE it!  I was so terrified/nervous my first Sunday but since then, I have just completely fallen in love with it!  A few weeks ago, we played a game and they picked something out of the bag with a song attached and dressed me up with crazy glasses and headbands.  We played a game a couple of weeks ago where they rolled dice and came up with the song and how we sang it.  So we ended up singing Families Can Be Together Forever like robots.  It's just so much fun!

Reagan is in middle school now and has gotten over the jitters she had when she first started.  She's made some new friends and kept some other friendships alive from elementary school.  She is taking P.E. this 9 weeks and Bon and I chuckle on those days because she looks like such a tomboy wearing black shorts/pants with a white/gray shirt.  She doesn't feel comfortable changing in the locker room yet, so she wears the clothes all day.  "You aren't even allowed to change in the bathroom, Mom, you *have* to change in the locker room!"

Ryan is doing great in 5th grade.  He has a great, fun teacher this year and even though his bff isn't in his class, he has still made new friends and is getting good grades.  His goal was for all A's, but he missed that this last nine weeks.  Still A's and B's though.  He loved doing baseball and asked to do lacrosse next, but I am tired!  lol  It will be nice to not have somewhere to be every night.  He does need something to do, so I'm not sure what will be next.  Sports are so expensive here, compared to Belmont.

Ty is his usual exuberant self.  Full of life and laughter.  His teacher said it took her a couple of weeks to figure out that he would daydream and be chatty, but yet he could still get his work done in time.  He has enjoyed soccer and like Bon, I think he's glad he's done.  He wants to do gymnastics next.  I told Bon that I was thinking Ty would do great in a hip hop dance class.  He said "I'm not sure we want to encourage that..."  lol  But we do need to keep him active, since he's a little more plump.  (but dang cute)

Evan is in preschool and has blossomed so much!  Within the first 2 weeks he turned into a chatterbox!  His first day of school, I asked what he did/who he met, etc.  All he could tell me was there was a pretty girl in his class that wore a pink dress and pink pants that went all the way around.  HAHA!  I finally figured out who the pretty girl is and I told her mom.  It was so cute!  He's at a Methodist church for preschool, so they incorporate prayer and scripture into the day.  He sang the prayer they sing before lunch and it ends with "amen, amen", but Evan sings it "Aw-man, aw-man".  He had a top tooth pulled the beginning of September.  He had bumped it as a toddler and it was dead.  There was an abscess on his gum that was holding puss, so the tooth needed to come out.   Shortly after they pulled that, his bottom front tooth was loose and fell out and then I just pulled the other front bottom one out the other day because it was barely hanging on.  I've never had a kid lose teeth so early!  So he's quite toothless and cute!  (the other bottom ones are growing in though)

In other news, we are looking around here for a house with more land and in a quiet place.  We have two dogs now and our backyard backs up to a busy highway/street.  There's constant traffic noise and it has been two plus years and I'm still not used to it.  The process is going slow, though, because we'd really like to stay in our ward and in the school district.  So while we wait, we work on this house to get it pretty.  :)

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Little tidbits

A few weeks ago, Evan was pretending to be a robot.  We had just finished dinner and asked Evan to clear his plate from the table.  He walked up to the table, moved his head side to side and said "scan, scan, scan" with a robot voice.  Bon and I looked at each other and cracked up!  I still get a good chuckle out of that one.

The kids seem to always ask when they can just have time alone with Bon or me.  We would usually put them off and not plan anything.  So I finally sat down a couple of weeks ago and came up with a date schedule.  One weekend will be a parent/child date on Friday and Saturday (different child/parent each night) and the following weekend will be a date night for Bon and I.

Well last weekend Bon was going with Ryan on Friday and I went with Ty on Saturday.  Saturday morning, Bon was telling me about the time they had.  He said that as they were driving, he hadn't really asked Ryan anything and it had been quiet.  Ryan piped up from the backseat and said, "Dad, you're probably wondering how my day was." and proceeded to tell him.  He said that Ryan shared what he did that day in the order it was done and his thoughts about stuff.  Then he paused and said, "Your idea for date nights was great.  Thanks."  I just thought that was wonderful.  Bon works a lot and often says he wishes he had more time with the kids.  I knew that having it on the calendar was one way to help get it done.

My date with Ty was hilarious.  That kid is a hoot.  I asked him what he wanted to be when he grew up.  "just a reg-lee-ur dad".  :)
Well, what are you going to do to earn money?
Oh, I'm not going to work.
Are you going to make your wife work?
Well, how are you going to pay for things like food and a house?
Welllll...I guess I could play music.
Oh, that's nice!
Yeah!  I could just put my hat down or something and people can just walk by and give me money when I play!
Soooo, you're going to play on the street??
Yeah --and continues to tell me a story about an obviously homeless person he saw on his way to the zoo for his field trip.  Apparently, you can make $100 a day!  ;)

Then I asked how many kids he wanted.
20???  (thinking oh his poor wife!)
Yeah!  Then I can build them a jungle gym!  Because kids LOOOVE jungle gyms!

In other news...
I told Bon last Tuesday during dinner that I kept getting the feeling I should be picking the kids up from school instead of them riding the bus home.  I said that I would start on Monday.  He turned and pointed to a saying I have up on the wall.  "Never postpone a prompting. Thomas S. Monson"  I said, "Dang it!  I'll go in tomorrow."  :)  I didn't have a number tag for our car this year and the kids needed their tags on their backpacks changed from bus to car.  So I got that taken care of and I've gotten them since Wed. the 30th.

Reagan had her follow up eye appt on the 1st.  She was tested for glaucoma.  At her first appt, it was noticed that her left optic nerve is a bit larger than her right.  That can be indicative of glaucoma.  So the test they did was a perimetry test, where they test her range of peripheral vision.  The doctor said that this test is hard for even grown ups the first time, because you just don't know what to expect or how to to it properly.  So there were spots on the test where she dipped into the troubled area.  And her eye pressure was 16.  So we have another appt on the 3rd of December with an ophthalmologist in the same practice.  She will perform the perimetry test again and the doctor will also see how thick her eye is to see if 16 is a good/bad number.  She explained that the eye is like a balloon, if you have a thicker balloon, you have more stretch and give, but a thinner one can only be stretched so much.  So...  Bon is coming with us for this one, since I never think of any questions to ask.  I did ask if it was stoppable.  And she said that it can't be cured, but there are treatments that slow it down significantly, such as eye drops.

I think that's all our big news.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Little bits

Every day around me there are little bits of loved ones.  Some of the ones I use most frequently belonged to my Grandma Smith.

I can still see this stack of bowls in the corner of her counter, stacked and ready to be filled with potato salad or fresh cucumbers and onions from her garden.

And these are the pots she cooked with most.  I'm sure the original handles had long since been broken and were replaced by these wooden ones from my grandpa.

She could be a mean old woman.  Never shy to say if you were getting fat.  But I loved her.  I'd spend a week at a time with her during the summer.  Once I was woken up by her making this strange bird call at 7 in the morning!  In the summer!  Trying to attract a cardinal and I'm sure failing miserably.  But still she tried. (birdie, birdie, birdie)  I can still remember the way her house smelled.  And still wanting to go and stay, even though I know ghosts roamed at night.  (truly...stairs don't creak by themselves one at a time....)  I miss her.

I hope everyone has little bits of their loved ones.  Sometimes physical reminders are so nice, especially when a lot of time has passed.  It makes them feel more real, instead of just a memory.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

A little testimony strengthened.

Upon returning from Ohio, Ryan has been having issues with going to sleep/staying asleep.  Bon and I are getting frustrated and we're trying really hard to keep to a routine, but sometimes things just don't go smoothly at bedtime.  Last Saturday at one in the morning, Ryan kept popping up out of bed and Bon became so frustrated he went to the basement to sleep.  Ryan came into bed with me and slept, finally.  Ryan wants someone with him; Bon and I just want to be alone at night.  

So as I laid there, I was saying a silent prayer, once again, praying for Ryan, for ways we can help him, for inspiration on how to help him, what to say, etc.  I was tired and frustrated and I think about halfway through my prayer, I just questioned if He was even there.  Was He even listening?  Did He even care?  

Fast forward to the next morning, we walked into the chapel and I was approached by the Executive Secretary.  Would I give the closing prayer?  I wanted to turn to him and say "Are you kidding me??" because I just had this internal struggle and I really don't like praying in public to begin with.  But I agreed.  

Fast forward to the closing prayer.  As I was walking toward the podium, I felt this overwhelming love.  I felt this peace and comfort and assurance that He is there and He does care.  He hears our prayers and He loves each and every one of us.  I croaked through a closing prayer, grabbing a tissue on the way down. 

On Tuesday, we had a RS presidency meeting and I had the spiritual thought.  I shared this experience from Sunday and this scripture.  

Moroni 10:7 And ye may know that he is, by the power of the Holy Ghost; wherefore I would exhort you that ye deny not the power of God; for he worketh by power, according to the faith of the children of men, the same today and tomorrow, and forever. 

In my patriarchal blessing, I am promised many things as long as I have faith.  That brings me comfort when I remember those blessings.  I often feel imperfect and I know I have many shortcomings, but I know that with my faith, I can only grow and become stronger in the gospel.  http://www.lds.org/scriptures/gs/faith?lang=eng   

Thursday, August 08, 2013

Whirlwind Summer

Last day of school

This summer seemed to rush by.  Before school was even out, we were at swim team practices.  Once school was out, the mornings were booked with swimming and Thursday evenings were spent at meets.  It was a fun experience and all of the kids did so well and progressed so much.  The kids gained confidence in the water and it has been such a blessing for me to not have to watch them like a hawk when we go swimming.

In July we went to Ohio.  We spent some time with Bon's parents, my parents and some time at the farm.  With the Carters, we shot guns and knitted on looms.  With the Smiths we went to Limestone Lake and went to the park and out for ice cream.  At the farm we spent time with Jenny, did the annual shopping with her and her friend Alice.  While we were there, a big storm passed through and a couple big branches came down from some trees and almost hit the house.  That's when we called in some help and had some guys cut the two trees down that were closest to the house.  They did a good job and they did it for free.  We payed them in popsicles, since it was really hot.  I'm grateful they were able to help us.

Limestone Lake

Limestone Lake

Storm damage right after the storm.

Storm damage in the sun.  :)

Without the trees.  :(

We ended the summer with being at home and getting ready for school.  It was a few weeks of playing with friends, going to the pool and the last couple of days were spent with Mary and her girls.

Chess at the library.

Sacked out on our bed.

Lunch with Mary and her girls before they left.

The kids are excited about their new teachers.  Reagan has Mrs. Sebastian, Ryan has Mrs. Williams (Reagan had her last year!) and Ty has Mrs. Smith.  We've met them and they all seem like wonderful teachers.  Their first day was yesterday, the 7th, and they came home chatting up a storm.  I don't think Reagan stopped talking the rest of the night.

First day of school.  Ryan was excited too, just mad that Ty had tried putting his arm around him too.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

RIP Beautiful Girl

I got two phone calls today.  A short one from my Aunt Sally and a longer one with my Dad.  They were calling to let me know that my Aunt Brenda passed away this morning.  She was 60 years old, 33 years past the 27 year life expectancy the doctors had given her.  She had Down's Syndrome and lived with my grandparents for as long as they lived.  When my Grandma passed away, Brenda moved into a nursing home and was under great care.  Her diabetes stabilized and she was doing really well.  In the past year, however, she started to decline.  She was put on Hospice care in September of 2012 and even though she was doing pretty normally physically, we knew she wouldn't be with us much longer.

Her passing comes as a shock for me, mostly because I try keeping my head in the sand about how bad people really are.

I loved her and will miss her greatly.  She had a beautiful spirit.

Brenda Kay Smith 

Friday, May 03, 2013

Busy times

Summer is going to start full-force here in a couple of weeks and I am not ready!

Swim team starts with after school practices on the 13th.

The last day of school is the 22nd.

Morning practices begin on the 23rd.  I'm grateful that my kids aren't in the early group.  The earliest one is 9.  I can handle that.  Evan won't start his practices until the 28th.  I'm super excited that he will get to learn to swim this year.  He was doing really well last year, just being at the pool for 4-5 days out of the week.  And I'm hopeful for the others that they will learn to swim better and not plug their noses and be afraid of getting their face wet and going under (Ty was last year).

Our Thursdays will be consumed with swimming all of June.  Practice in the morning until 11 and then meets at night starting at 6:30, but having to be there around 5.  There are a lot of members of our ward on this team, so I'm excited for a chance to get to know some of them better.

After swim is over, we will be headed to Ohio.  Probably the 5th or 6th of July and coming back here the 22nd or so.  I'm sure I'll be twitchy once I get back here.

But then my lovely friend, Mary, and her kids will be visiting before they move back to NC!!!!  I guess it's not set in stone yet, but it's leaning pretty heavy that way.  They will be close to Raleigh though, which is more like 5.5 hours from here.  Or if your Dad, it's about 4.  ;)

Then school starts the 7th of August or something crazy like that.

Ah, I guess I don't mind the summer.  Especially when we can hang out at the pool and come back to our nice, cool home.  :)