Friday, 27 April 2007

The Amazing Mumford - Jill!

Tonight we had a ward talent show. Jill did magic. She's quite the performer!! She came up with her routine herself - and pulled it off without a hitch.

Dog House Day

Poor Peirce has been sick this week with pink eye. He had it in just the one eye - then it jumped to the other. His eyes get all swollen and pussy and he just looks nasty. Not very fun! We were supposed to have a birthday party yesterday but we have post-poned it because of the pink eye. Yesterday he came to me with big tears in his eyes. He was on the verge of sobbing when he told me, "Mom, I don't want to give anyone my inflection" (but he really meant infection). I told him I thought he was a real nice boy and he just cried and hugged me. I think he was really worn out.

Today we got a BIG box that we're going to use for his puppy-themed birthday party. We set it up and cut out a door and he worked on painting it. It kept him busy for hours and he's been very happy today having something new and interesting to focus on. This box has to be the cheapest day of entertainment we've had in a long time!

He got paint all over his head and face. It was too funny. All in a kid's day's work I guess! Kids have the best fun when they get the dirties, I think.

The deck looks far worse than his head - but I think it'll wash off. His face did eventually get clean too.

A close up view in better light of his painted face. He's looking mighty proud of himself I'd say!

He was one tired puppy by the end of the day!

Tuesday, 24 April 2007

Happy Birthday Peirce!

Today was Peirce's birthday. Hard to believe it was 5 years ago we were heading off to the hospital and quickly met our little boy. That day my water broke in the morning at about 8:00. We went to the hospital by about 10:00 and things progressed quite well. By 4:00 Peirce was born. He was such an easy baby! People always said I'd have to pay for that one day - but so far so good. He's still a nice little boy.

Our day started quite early as usual. Peirce always wakes up bright and early. He came into our room just after 6:00. I snuggled with him and asked if he knew what day it was. He said, "Gym day?" Yup. But even more important than that - your birthday! Suddenly his eyes lit up and he was much more energetic. We held off until 7:00 to open presents. We even called Nana and Grandpa and had them on the phone when he opened the present from them. It was a Thomas the Train piece and a Thomas movie. He had just been looking at those and really really wanted one - so he was very happy.

We're planning a birthday party later this week with a puppy cake - so we bought a cake to celebrate today. Peirce, as usual, was the Safety Guy. He didn't want us to light the candles - just put them on the cake. But we told him you can't have a birthday cake if you don't light the candles....even though it seems very unsafe.

The big hit of the day was the Nerf guns. And the best target of all? Chico!! (Poor Chico)

This morning when we went to the gym Peirce decided it was his birthday and he deserved a treat. Who was I to disagree?! He chose a yogurt parfait and some candy popcorn. Tonight Chico decided a yogurt parfait is a great treat for him too!

The day didn't end off too happy. This afternoon I noticed Peirce's eye was looking red. As the day wore on it became more and more clear that he had Pink Eye. We went to the doctor tonight and got a prescription. At least he's still smiling though!

We had planned the birthday party for Thursday - but in light of the Pink Eye we're thinking we might need to re-schedule to next Tuesday. Rats!

Monday, 23 April 2007

Mom You Lied!!

Today I took Peirce for his 4 1/2 year old shots. We've been putting this off for a while but today we finally made it to the appointment (had an appointment previously but somehow it totally slipped my mind). Peirce was very nervous about it and didn't want to get in the van - but I just kept the forward motion going and somehow he got swept up in it and got in the van and off we went. I had promised him it wouldn't hurt (big mistake) and that after, if he was brave, we'd go to McDonald's.

When we went in he was excited to see the play area. He played a bit and then got weighed and measured. He is now a 50th percentile kid in height and weight - great news!! He was in the 50th percentile when he was born and then around six months (or sooner) he just quit growing until he slipped below the charts. The doctors and nurses all had fits and we had to go to tons of appointments. They'd grill me every time on our family history and what he eats and then tell me if he didn't grow a certain amount by the next visit they'd hospitalize him - and every time he'd just eek over the bar. You wouldn't even know it now!! I was pretty happy about that.

After getting weighed and measured we went into the nurse's office. I let her know that Peirce isn't one to pull a fast one on and asked if she'd explain to him what she was going to do and why. They had a lovely conversation and he nodded that he understood. He quickly changed the subject though and wanted to show her his bag of treasures he had picked up on our walk this morning (a few bottle caps, a small piece of rope and a piece of metal in the shape of an S). She admired his treasures and then said it was time to pull up his sleeve. He had long sleeves on so we had to take his arm right out of his shirt - which really didn't help my modest little boy feel comfortable. There were two needles to be had. The first one wasn't so bad...but after the second he said, "That hurt! Mom! You lied!"

Being a Mommy isn't always that fun. I do keep my promises though - and we did go to McDonald's. We have a rule that we don't go to McDonald's without Jill anymore (too many tears when he'd show her the new toy he got in his Happy Meal that day) and he was concerned about Jill not being there - but I told him she'd understand. We stayed as long as he wanted to stay and play (which was really kind of a drag because I couldn't find a newspaper to read to fill the time). He seemed to forget the ache in his arm while we were there - but after being home for a couple hours he was rather irritable.

Tonight he's complained a fair bit about his arm aching. He's also reminded me a number of times that I lied to him. Jill took him to the park and they walked around for about an hour looking for potential customers for her dog walking business - which totaly wore him out. He came home and had his favorite dinner (toast) and then laid down to watch TV. By 6:45 he was out. I sure hope he feels better tomorrow for his birthday!

How could I lie to a cute face like that??!! Sure love that boy....

Sunday, 22 April 2007

Cousins, Creatures, Classes and Cakes

We have had a fun weekend. On Friday Adam (Allen's sister, Carmen's husband) came up here for some meetings he had and he brought his two girls with him so they could sleep over at our house. They arrived just before lunch on Friday. Perice was so excited we had to peel him off the ceiling a few times. We did a couple errands and then went and got Jill from school and let her skip school that afternoon. I took all the kids to Aggie days - which was a lot of fun. They really loved it. Although Jill did complain that we did things too quickly (I guess being there from 1:00 until 4:00 wasn't enough for her ) She has a unique fettish in that she loves to take notes. She wanted to write down stuff about what she learned there. She was quite bothered that she didn't have a notebook to bring with her. One of the booths gave them a sticky notepad - and so then she could take notes on that - but that wasn't until quite late in the afternoon.

By 8:00 that night they were totally exhausted and went to bed quite willingly! The next morning they played outside a lot. The girls live in Raymond and they are really used to just being able to wander around anywhere. Not quite the same story in Calgary!! They came home at one point saying they had visited a couple garage sales and wanted to buy some things. I talked them into going over to Bow Valley chapel instead where they were having a piggy bank sale - which wasn't a true piggy bank sale because everything was free. It was a lot of fun. Everyone got to pick one thing. Funny how kids can find such treasures in a junk pile. :0)

By lunch time Adam was finished with his meetings and came back to pick up the girls. We were sorry to see them go.

Today I taught Gospel Doctrine. Our regular teacher, is in Australia right now. She went down just before her new granddaughter was born and is there for six weeks. She teaches at Mt. Royal and she is working while she is there. I'm astounded that that can happen. She does presentations on power point and records her commentary. Kids log in and listen to it and email her questions and assignments. Amazing what you can do these days! I'm looking forward to her returning - although the more times I teach SS the more I'm enjoying it. It was quite nerve wracking at first!! I'm getting better though. :0)

This week is Peirce's birthday - so we're planning a puppy birthday party. (Don't tell him...but before he gets his birthday on Tuesday he is going for is 4.5 year old shot on Monday....poor kid) Anyway, Jill knows how to make an origami dog - so we're going to do that for invitations. I'm on the prowl for a refrigerator box so they can decorate and play in a 'dog house'. Now I just have to figure out how to make a puppy birthday cake. He wants a cake that is the shape of a dog. I have a feeling it's not going to be the most beautiful cake - but he'll love it. :0) Wish me luck!

Wednesday, 18 April 2007

Some people are never happy....

I was a little irritated tonight. We had a school council meeting. Prior to the meeting on Tuesday where we found out they weren't going to close our school I wasn't going to go to the School Council meeting on Wednesday. I figured we were going to be closed and so the meeting Wednesday would be a real downer. However, when the decision went the other way I decided I needed to go - if for no other reason than to celebrate! There are a few things that we as parents have just kind of let slide because of the chance that we were closing - so there was a lot to talk about. I figured it would be a great celebration. I was sure surprised when many were still complaining!! These are people that were talking about how we needed to FIGHT to keep our school. Well, we got our school and now they're not happy that we do because our numbers are low. I was so irritated by the time I left that I could hardly stand it. One complained about how she didn't like how the Scenario Development Team (which I was on) presented information. I was totally irritated by her. She had a number of suggestions on how we could have done things better. I finally said that we had all worked long and hard on that committee. None of us were experts in the matter and we all did the best we could and perhaps when the opportunity comes up again she should come and be on the committee if she's such an expert.

There are moments when I wonder why I bother trying to be an involved parent at all. Hello! We have our school people. We have some great plans with becoming a Learning Through the Arts program. Let's be excited and get to work!!

One of the parents asked if I wanted to go for a drink with her and a few others after the meeting. Normally I'm not into hanging out at the neighborhood pub - but I sure enjoyed it. I'm glad I wasn't the only one that was irritated by the talk at that meeting!

Some people are just never happy I guess.

Here's the article in today's paper about our school. If you click on it you can read it (well, almost read's a little of these days I'm going to have to figure out how to use the scanner) ....see if you can find my name in there!

David and Goliath Principle At Work Perhaps??

I'm so excited. It's too bad It's 11:30 pm! It's difficult to call
people this late at night. ;0)

I went to the school board meeting where they debated whether or not
to close our school. I was rather resigned to our fate and figured I
might as well see the postives in going to the new school.

Well, to my surprise, they didn't close our school!!

There were two schools on the chopping block. It was interesting
because they voted unanimously in favor of closing the other school.
When it came to debating closure of our school it quickly became
evident that they weren't so sure about closing it. I was sitting by
our principal and I kept poking him and saying, "I can't believe
this?! I am starting to feel like there's hope!" and he'd say, "I
told you!"

And then in the end there was on Trustee that voted in favor of
closure, and six voted against.

After the meeting I was approached by a reporter from the Calgary
Herald. She had talked to me before the meeting too. She asked me
what I thought of the outcome - and I just cried. She kind of looked
at me with a blank look - and then walked away. (LOL I'm a lousy
interview!!) After that the CTV reporter asked if she could interview
me. Luckily she had to interview the chair of the trustees first - so
I had a minute to get it together....and did a bit of a better job on
that one. LOL (My one thought I kept having was - I'm sure glad I
colored my hair last Friday so I don't look so grey)

So, that's my story. I have a renewed faith in the system. We had
totally stacked the committee that put forward the scenarios for
consideration. I think they really did listen! I also heard a lot of comments that lead me to believe that they really were listening at the public meeting last month and that the things parents said there did make a difference.

Funny. I was probably the most cynical parent when it came to CBE
when Jill started scool. I think they're almost winning me over!

One of the things they mentioned tonight is that they really like the arts programming going on at the school and mused about making it a French Immersion Learning Through the Arts school. That would be my dream!! In the beginning I debated over whether to send Jill to a learning through the arts school or French Immersion. If we get both happening that would be TERRIFIC!!

I thought maybe I'd be using this shot of the trustees as a dart board today - but not so!!

Monday, 16 April 2007

Girls Don't Have Muscles

Jill has an interest lately in exercising. She asked me to teach her some of the exercises I do at the gym. I have made up a workout program for her to follow. Allen always has an health/fitness magazine around so this morning they were looking at the girls in the magazine and admiring their amazing abs. Jill wanted to cut out some of the pictures and put them on her wall.

Later Peirce was looking at the magazine. He came upstairs and announced to me that girls don't really have muscles. I replied they sure do - check out these pipes! And I showed him my muscles (which, for the first time in years you can see if I flex! LOL) and he replied, "Mom, they're so small they're just pretend."

....LOL....out of the mouths of babes...

Sunday, 15 April 2007

Gospel Doctrine

I've been subbing as the Gospel Doctrine teacher for the past few weeks. It's been interesting. Today was probably my best experience of all. It was really funny how the lesson just came together. When I read over the lesson last Sunday I really wondered how in the world I'd be able to come up with anything to say. I thought about it all week but it wasn't until last night that things finally started coming together. It turned out to be a really great lesson - lots of discussion and the spirit was strong. It was an interesting experience. I think I need to do a little reflecting on what the contributing factors may have been and see if I can replicate the experience next week! I'm not exactly sure when the regular teacher will be back. My guess is that I have two more lessons to teach.

Saturday, 14 April 2007

Fast Start School

We attended a PFS Fast Start School today. It was really great. They had some people come from Ontario and speak. The partner was the first person I've ever heard speak who said she really wasn't involved and supportive for the first few years. They decided to do PFS so that she could stay home with the kids - and that's what she did. She did nothing in the business. When I was listening to hear the guilt I've felt the past couple of years slowly lifted. I was much more involved when we didn't have kids. I was even still involved when Jill was younger. When she was a baby we always brought her with us - and that was no big deal. Then Junko came along and she'd babysit while I went to meetings and events. However, since she's been gone I never go to Opp nights nor Saturday training. I don't know people in the office. And I am not in the know with contest and such. I think I understand the business pretty good and could probably step back in any time and do paperwork and help with things - but it just seems like this is not my season to be doing that. It was so interesting to listen to this woman whose husband has become amazingly successful and she didn't put hours in at the office, she didn't make phone calls, she didn't get lisenced - NOTHING!

Maybe there is hope for us. LOL

Friday, 13 April 2007

Friday the 13th is Not So Unlucky After All!

We made it!! Allen went yesterday and got his new driver's lisence. We actually made it through 30 days of him not having a lisence. I am especially proud of him for getting through it all without being mad or discouraged or anything like that. He just made do and did the best he could.

Yesterday he went for a walk with Peirce over to the registry office near us and when he came home he let me know he had his lisence again. And now he's back at it! Last night he drove to Lethbridge/Raymond to do a bunch of things that people there have been waiting on.

For this trip Allen took Peirce with him. Peirce is really a reluctant traveler. One minute he's going, then he decides he'd rather stay home with me. I pretty much made him go in the end. He's having a wonderful time though. Last night they stayed at Nana and Grandpa's. He had fun visiting at the stops along the way. At Nana and Grandpa's he especially enjoyed having nerf gun wars. Then he got to have a "sleep-over" with daddy. Apparently today he is hanging out with Zane at Auntie Carmen's. I'm sure he's having a GREAT time!

As for me - my day has been BLISS! Jill slept in this morning and almost missed the bus - but we rushed around to make sure she made it...and then I skipped all the way home and spent the whole day all ALONE. I didn't even go to the gym. I wanted to be able to enjoy an entire day all to myself in peace and quiet - and I couldn't quite bear to miss out on any of the potential time alone. Something funny has happened to me as I've become old (older?). I can't stand rides at the midway. Especially anything that spins! I can't even look at a spinning ride. I'm not quite as afraid of snakes as I used to be (I can't look at them now...although I've still never touched one and DO NOT want to)...and I LOVE being alone. I used to totally thrive on the having people around...kind of like Jill does. I loved having roommates that were lots of fun. I loved having people over. When I was teaching I seemed to live for the craziness of a classroom. However, since having my own kids I LOVE being alone. As I was looking around and admiring my newly cleaned house today I wished I had two more days of this!

I suppose one day I'll long for the days of having noisy little people around.

I can't quite imagine that though.

Monday, 9 April 2007

Spring (?) Break

Well, it's almost over. Tomorrow Jill goes back to school.

Quite honestly, I've enjoyed having her home (surprise!) Jill and Peirce have got along famously and have had a lot of fun - and that has made all the difference. For FHE last week Jill gave the lesson. She gave a report on her favorite talk from Conference and shared something she has resolved to do. She said her favorite talk was the one on prayer and also the one on talking nicely (both from Saturday morning) and she had a goal to talk nicer to Peirce. I think that made all the difference this week. It is so wonderful to see your kids get along so well! It seems that Jill can make all the difference there.

The weather for Spring Break sure hasn't been great. We only had two days without snow. Today there isn't any snow - but it has been raining. That has been okay though. The kids found some sidewalk chalk and spent quite a lot of time outside playing with that, jumping on the trampoline, and playing with some kids in the neighborhood. They also found some bird seed in the garage and spent quite a lot of time tryint to entice birds to our yard. They were very patient in trying to get this to happen!! I didn't want to burst their bubble and let them know the birds would most likely not come anywhere close to our yard with them sitting there - but hey, who wants to spoil a quiet afternoon in the house alone? Not me!

We're supposed to get some more snow tomorrow -and then after that it'll be warm temperatures all week long. Hopefully that will be the real beginning of Spring. I'm sure ready for it!!

Other big news - we've almost made it through the 30 days of Allen not being able to drive. This week he can get his lisence back. We almost have all the fines paid too. Yea!!!

Sunday, 8 April 2007

Easter Sunday

Our kids woke up bright and early this morning - just like normal. I heard them talking in amazement that the Easter Bunny didn't come to our house. I called them to come into our room as the Easter Bunny left the baskets in our room. They were thrilled with them. They each got a new shirt and Jill also got a skirt. They got some puzzles and a couple toys and a poster. No candy though! It was perfect. Thanks Easter Bunny!

Church today was really great. I really enjoyed the testimonies and the lessons. I've been subbing for our Gospel Doctrine teacher while she is away. I'm not sure I'm really cut out to be a Gospel Doctrine teacher - but I do enjoy preparing for it! I think that is why everything was a little more meaningful today - because I've spent so much time studying lately.

After church we invited a couple in our ward over. They are Peirce's Primary teachers (he has two). It was fun to get to know them better. Peirce said he wishes we could have them over every Sunday!! The husband is from Mexico. He's quite an interesting fellow - has had lots of adventures in his life. His wife is a new convert and a really nice girl. They live close to where we do. I think they'll be fun friends.

Saturday, 7 April 2007

Families ARE Forever

Last night we drove down to Lethbridge and stayed overnight at my parents house. This morning we got to go to the temple to see our friend's John and Carolyn be sealed. It was really great and we were thrilled to be invited. John is a convert and is in the EQ Presidency with Allen. We've really enjoyed getting to know him - and in a way I think we'll be sorry to not be able to hear anymore dating stories from him! LOL After they were sealed Carolyn's two children were sealed to them as well. I've never seen a live sealing before, and it was VERY touching.

After that Allen and I went through a session together with his parents. I don't know when Allen and I last went through a session together! Usually we rotate who goes and who hangs out with the kids. It was great to go together. We need to do that more often!

Today was also my dad's birthday. It was fun to be there on his birthday. Not sure how fun it was for he and my mom to spend all day looking after our kids and our dog - but hopefully it was okay. :0)

Wednesday, 4 April 2007

Easter Fun

I should get to work...but I have to write about the fun morning we had. This picture isn't a picture of the kids here today. Our kids are wearing snowsuits and winter boots outside still! (ugh!)

This morning was the Easter Party. We had 21 kids there. Jill was the oldest. Most of them were pre-schoolers. We had 3 or 4 crafts and cookies to decorate and games to play. I sang songs with the kids. I was going to teach them Here Comes Peter Cottontail - but that was a bust. The hokey pokey, Easter bunny style, was much more popular. We played that one for a long time! All the mom's brought something for a snack and we shared with everyone...and then one mom took all the kids into one room while the rest of us hid plastic Easter eggs with candy in them. You know, I've never been involved with a real Easter Egg hunt like that! The kids were so fun to watch! The ran around like mad and squealed every time they found another egg. There were hundreds of them - so there was lots of squealing. At the end we all went back into the RS room and opened up all the eggs and put the candy into some bunny bags they had made. Peirce kept saying "Look how many I have!" He was so excited I thought he might split in two! The bunny bags they put their candies in looked like this:

It was really fun...and I think it was pretty easy to get it to all come together. At least it looked pretty easy from my perspective!

On the way home Jill and Peirce both were talking a mile a minute trying to tell me what they liked best. Then they got into their bags to eat the candy. They both decided to give each other the cookies they had decorated. They've often made cookies at primary parties like that and they tell the kids they should do something kind and give the cookie to someone else - so I think that's where they got the idea from.

It sure is to have some good friends to do fun things like this with!

Tuesday, 3 April 2007

Thank Goodness for Good Kids!

I really am so grateful for some good people in our life. One of my favorite's is Jenny. She's a girl in our ward that joined the church when she was 15. She was going to the YSA ward with her sister and got baptized. She lives in our ward boundries so they shipped her off to our ward. She's been a great source of enthusiasm and a good friend ever since. It's especially interesting to watch her and Jill. Jill adores her. Jenny sometimes comes over on a Sunday afternoon and we visit and she is so good to Jill and to Peirce. A couple of times Jill and Jenny have spent time reading and studying scriptures together. Jenny will tell Jill that she likes to do this or that when she studies scriptures and Jill will say, "Ya! Me too"! (which really means that is what I'm GOING to do too!) Jenny attends French Immersion and so Jill feels a special kinship with her because of that. They've decided that they' re going to memorize the Articles of Faith in English and in French and yesterday after conference Jenny called Jill to follow up on that pact. I often find Jill saying things that I know she got from Jenny. So glad they're good things!

Monday, 2 April 2007

Is it almost over???

Well, we're one day into our Spring Break - and if it doesn't end soon someone could die!!

Just kidding (kind of)

I sure wish we had better weather though. It would be much nicer if they could go outside and play ALL afternoon.

I really do like being a mother. And I really do like my kids - on most days. (At least that is what I keep repeating to myself again and again) But some days I sure do tire of it all! This picture shows how much I enjoy it sometimes:

(Sometimes I good laugh is just the thing I need!)

Anyway, Peirce got two punishments for not listening. My least favorite moments in parenting are when you tell a kid to do something and they totally ignore you and do the exact opposite. I hate that!! That was where Peirce found himself today. After the first one he got to choose his punishment: no more playing with the dog for the rest of the day. Sounded great to me. Right after that I asked him to go get his shoes on so we could go pick Daddy up from the office. I went down to put my shoes on - and he went and played on the computer. Argh!! Down came punishment #2: no more TV today. If the day hadn't gone like that all along the way things might not have seemed so bad - but for me it was too much.

I never did believe that stuff when people would say "this is going to hurt me more than it is going to hurt you". I do know it's true though. It sure would be easier to ignore those things and not have to deal with it.

Oh well. Such is the life of a parent I guess.

Luckily Jill's astute enough to realize when these moments start happening that it's in her best interest to lay low and be extra good.

Tonight a friend called with a great idea - and news that made me feel much better about my life with my kids. It seems a bunch of other mom's in the ward are feeling tired of being in the house with their kids too and so they decided to do something about it. We're having a little Easter party on wednesday at the church for kids. It will be fun. We're going to do crafts and paint eggs and stuffl like that - which sounds perfect to me because then I can avoid having to paint eggs at home! Yea!! (I'm such a party pooper sometimes)

I think if this darn snow would QUIT alot of things would change for the better!! Today I told the kids I'd had it and we were going to move to Arizona. Peirce cried and said he didn't want to move. Jill asked if they have French schools there and I told her I didn't think so - and so she aws adamant too that we weren't moving. I guess we'll stay a little while longer. :)

That being said....tonight things went much better. Peirce knew he had crossed the line and he was just as good as gold for the rest of the night. Jill taught the FHE lesson tonight and gave a report on what she learned from Conference - and it was heartwarming to watch her give the lesson.

I guess I won't quit this motherhood thing just yet.

Sunday, 1 April 2007

April Fool's!

Happy April Fool's day! We've had a great weekend watching Conference and relaxing at home. We tried a few tricks this morning - but we learned one thing - Peirce doesn't have much of a sense of humor when it comes to practical jokes on him. We didn't have anything great or noteworthy as far as pranks go - but tried a few things. We'd share our news...and quickly follow up with "April Fool's!" upon which he'd run away crying.

...maybe next year...

I enjoyed reading about great practical jokes other people have done! Here's one of my favorites:

In 1998 Burger King published a full page advertisement in USA Today announcing the introduction of a new item to their menu: a "Left-Handed Whopper" specially designed for the 32 million left-handed Americans. According to the advertisement, the new whopper included the same ingredients as the original Whopper (lettuce, tomato, hamburger patty, etc.), but all the condiments were rotated 180 degrees for the benefit of their left-handed customers. The following day Burger King issued a follow-up release revealing that although the Left-Handed Whopper was a hoax, thousands of customers had gone into restaurants to request the new sandwich. Simultaneously, according to the press release, "many others requested their own 'right handed' version."

Here's another good one by only Google can do...

(Be sure to click on Get started to get the whole story) The 'contact us' link is also quite entertaining