May 29, 2012

   Erik's buddy from church came to play at our house today while his parents packed up their house to move to Utah.  These boys have bonded over Starwars, Batman, and Green Lantern.  I had to break the news of the move to Erik yesterday, and he's been sadder than I expected.   I guess I forget that Erik is old enough to realize what it means when a friend moves away. 

May 28, 2012

  Happy Memorial Day!  Yep, she still has her "spots."

May 27, 2012

   Remember on May 16th, when I couldn't find the picture I had taken for that day?  Well here it is.  It's not a very good picture, but I was juggling Bailey on my lap at the time.  Sydney is giving her power point presentation on emerald boas (I think that's what they're called).  Each of the kids in her class gave a two minute presentation on an animal that they researched and invited all the parents to come watch.  Isn't second grade nice?

May 26, 2012

      This morning the kids were trying to fly their kites in our backyard.  It's not a very big yard, and the trees were getting in the way.  They had been asking to fly their kites for days, so I decided to just take them to the park near our house and get it over with.  Of course, I decided this at 11:50 in the morning, and everyone was hungry for lunch.  So a stop at Red Robin was in order.  We were only at the park for about 20 minutes.  It was too windy and hot, and the kids got bored.  But I scored some points for the effort.

May 25, 2012

   Okay, I know this isn't exactly a flattering shot, but I had to get a shot of her poor legs.  These spots appeared this week all over her body.  At first we thought it was an allergic reaction and were racking our brains trying to figure out what she could be allergic to.  But then they didn't go away with Benadryl, so we figured it must be some sort of virus.  I finally took her to the pediatrician when they started getting worse.  The doctor said they are a result of a virus she must have had a week ago.  She put Bailey on steroids to try to clear them up.  Do you notice how buff Bailey looks because of the steroids?

May 24, 2012

  Today Shelbi participated in her school talent show.  She played a song that she wrote herself.  I'm pretty proud of this girl.  Not only for her performance in the talent show, but mostly because of her perseverance. Last year was a rough one for her.  She had lots of friends turn on her and she felt sad and alone at school most of the time.  But she didn't let that affect her attitute about 4th grade. She was so excited for the things she'd get to do this year.  She found some new friends, participated in lots of school events, and had a great year.  She's even looking forward to middle school, which is rare.  She's pretty awesome.

May 23, 2012

  Today was our first day of 100 degree weather for the year.  Syd got this Slip-n-Slide from her birthday party and the kids couldn't wait to try it out.  Unfortunately either there's something wrong with the design of it, or our water pressure was too whimpy, because the water barely sprayed enough to get the thing wet.  The kids mostly just loved sitting in the water puddle at the end.  I'm thinking that if we are already seeing 100 degrees, I'm going to have to find some more effective ways to keep the kids occupied and cool this summer.

May 22, 2012

   This is one thing that I won't miss about school being out for the summer.  Waiting in the pick-up line after school.  I've heard horror stories of how pick-up lines go at other schools, and I must say that ours is very civil and organized.  But I hate chopping up the middle of my afternoon to go wait for 20 minutes for the kids to get out.  And if Jeff is working, then I usually have to wake up two napping kids to take with me.  And I hate waking up napping kids.  So here's to three months of lazy afternoons, filled with sleeping children.

May 21, 2012

Ghetto s'mores for Family Home Evening.

May 20, 2012

  I'm such a good cook, she licked her plate clean.

May 19, 2012

    Sydney requested a beach ball to play Hot Potato at her birthday party.  I guess I wasn't paying much attention to what I was buying because this one is four feet wide.  Not very easy to play Hot Potato with, but way more awesome.  The kids took turns jumping onto the ball and letting it roll them over.  We had a few minor injuries and the ball has since popped, but it was worth $4.

May 18, 2012

  Since Sydney's birthday isn't until after school is already out, we had her birthday party a couple of weeks early.  She really wanted a slumber party, and since I had my first when I was turning eight, as did Shelbi, I had no good excuse to say no.  She had four friends over.  They spent the evening chasing, giggling, crafting, eating, make-upping, and modeling.  Every one of them was sweet and we had none of the drama that usually comes with five girls spending more than an hour together.  Quite successful, I would say.

May 17, 2012

  I guess the problem with not keeping up with this blog is that I forget what picture I meant to post.  I have no idea what I took a picture of for this day and can't find anything from this date on any of my cameras.  It's a mystery.  So here's one from May 17, 2010.  This is a picture of most of my family at the Garland, Utah cemetery the day of my Grandma Darrington's funeral.  It was a lovely day of honoring my grandma.  And I love every one of these people (and the ones in my family who aren't pictured too).

May16, 2012

  My new ride.  It's nothing fancy, just something to ride around the neighborhood on with the kids.  I also got a trailer to tote Bailey in.  I don't remember the last time I rode a bike.  Probably at least fifteen years ago.  But you know what they say about riding a bike...

May 15, 2012

  We once went to a friend's house for dinner and they had a rule in their house that you couldn't eat in the living room unless you had a college degree.  Really it was just their way of keeping the kids from making a mess.  Or maybe it was to motivate their kids to go to college.  Jeff likes to tell our kids that we have the same rule.  But I'm not sure a college degree keeps the mess off of our couch.

May 14, 2012

   At the end of each piano "semester" the girls have a recital.  They play a couple of songs of their choice, or with a group of students.  The music studio holds recitals all week, so only a few students perform at a time.  This is a far cry from the recitals I used to have to do.  I remember working on my pieces for weeks because I had to have them memorized.  Then we'd go to a music hall in the evening, all dressed up, and have to perform for about 75 people.  There were programs, certificates, and refreshments afterwards.  I remember being so nervous, but it was probably good for me.  And it made the performance feel special when it was made into such a big production.  I wish my girls had the same experience.

May 13, 2012

   Happy Mother's Day to me.  The girls got this all ready for me while I showered.  I especially like the flower.  A nice touch.

May 12, 2012

    Oklahoma City has an awesome science museum for kids.  Here Shelbi tries out the Segway.  I took a turn after her and it was so fun!   I want one of these.  And I don't want to brag, but the worker let me do it all by myself, but insisted on holding on to the handle for the guy who was in line behind me (who also said to me, "I'll totally laugh if you crash!") 

May11, 2012

  Ready to swim in the hotel pool in Oklahoma City.  Poor Bailey. 
Why are babies in glasses/goggles so funny?

May 10, 2012

   Today the fourth graders put on a "wax museum."  Each one dressed up as a character from Texas history and prepared a speech about that person.  Shelbi was Elisabet Ney, a sculptor.  Doesn't she look pretty?

May 9, 2012

  The kids spent the evening outside, playing "Olympics."  They drew lines on the walkway with chalk and assigned each one a point value.  Whoever could make a basket from the farthest line, won.  I'm pretty sure this is a new event in the upcoming Olympics in London.

May 8, 2012

  The boys are playing t-ball this year, for the first time.  I feel for their coach.  At the practice, most of the kids had no clue what was going on.  And he's certainly not a touchy-feely kind of guy.  Ryan was particularly afraid of him after the first practice.  This could be interesting.

May 7, 2012

  All day I've been singing, "Back to life, back to reality."

May 6, 2012

   I flew back home today.  I wasn't sure I was going to actually make my flight from Paris to Dallas.  I hadn't had much luck finding my way around when I arrived in Paris and had to navigate the airport on my own.  But after some aimless wandering (did I really have to go through the parking garage to get to termimal A?)  I made it to my gate in time to fly home.  Honestly it was a rough flight.  I had been getting over a cold all week and we were flying at just the right altitude to make my sinuses throb miserably.  I took 4 ibuprofen and 2 Nyquil and called it a day.  I woke up five hours later, feeling much better.  I was anxious to get home to Jeff and the kids.  I came home to a clean house, happy kids, and leftover dinner (chicken and mashed potatoes) in the fridge.  Should I be concerned that apparently I'm pretty dispensable?

  This picture wasn't actually taken today, but my amazing week wouldn't have been possible without this great guy.  How did I get so lucky?

May 5, 2012

   Who says you can't celebrate Cinco de Mayo in Berlin, Germany?  We dined on pork tacos and Brad's awesome homemade salsa and guacamole.

May 4, 2012

   This morning we went to the summer "home" of Sophie Charlotte, the first queen of Prussia.  Her husband Elector Friederich III had this built for her.  After her death just six years later, he had it renamed after her, Schloss Charlottenburg.

Behind the palace were these lovely gardens and lake.

We had lunch at the palace cafe.  I ordered some real food, but lets face it, this cream puff was the main course.
   In the afternoon we set off to find Wittenburg.  Jill had never been there before either, so once we made it to the city we didn't really know which way it was to the church.  Imagine our awe as we came down a road to find this...
   Authentic "oohs" and "aahs" escaped our mouths.  This is the site of the doors on which Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses against the selling of indulgences in the Catholic church.  The actual doors were lost in a fire.

May 3, 2012

    Today we visited Sachsenhausen concentration camp.  I came away with a sad realization that there were so many truly evil people running these camps.  I can't understand how the officers could do what they did to the prisoners, some children, and then go home to their families and own kids, who lived in homes just outside the camp wall.

   This was a pleasant ending to the day, sitting in Jill's house, browsing through her family photo albums.

May 2, 2012

  Tuesday evening we flew from Paris to Berlin, to stay at my sister Jill's house for the remainder of the week.  She was our official tour guide today.  We began at the Brandenburg Gate...

then walked over to this building (honestly I can't remember what it is exactly.  A governemt building?  Impressive none the less.)

    Next we came to the Memorial to the Murdered Jew of Europe.  The designer of this memorial purposely made the ground uneven to make those who walk through it feel insecure, as the Jews felt during this time. 

   We ended our tour at this site where the Berlin wall once was.

  Whitney, Mom, Jill, Jami, Jenny (hidden), Ashley

   Oh, Jame...

May 1, 2012

Our second day in Paris, we began here, at the Arc de Triomphe. We got on the tour bus from here (we found it!) and spent the morning seeing the city and hopping off at different stops that interested us.  The bus had headphones, with an English speaking guide and lovely classical music.  Some of these pictures I don't even know what they are, I just found myself taking random photos of anything that looked cool.

 The bus was stopped here for quite a while.  I was sitting, talking to my sister-in-law, with the Eiffel Tower RIGHT THERE!  It was surreal.

 As we were passing this garden, the tour guide casually mentioned that this statue is Rodin's The Thinker.  Wow.

Notre Dame
 Jeff and I are in the market for some large chandeliers for our great room.  I think two of these would do nicely.
 They actually still have confessional inside Notre Dame.  This is an empty booth.  I thought it would be in bad taste to take a picture of someone actually in the process of confessing.

 This is the fountain into which Anne Hathaway throws her phone at the end of The Devil Wears Prada.

Looking at these pictures again, I can't believe I was actually there!