Friday, January 28, 2011

Friday Flashback...mud swimming pool

When I was growing up we lived out in the country...out where there are no sidewalks, stores, you get the picture.  We had a T.V., but most the time it wasn't working.  When it was working we only got channels 3, 6, 8, and 10.  During the hot summer days, there was nothing worth watching on T.V., especially during the "soap opera" time of day.

 We had to provide our own entertainment.  We would spend endless hours outside--riding bikes, floating the canal, playing kick-the-can, playing make believe, exploring the yard, taking a walk (sometimes down to the "dead calf"--another story for another time).  We probably spent 90% of the day, outside.  It didn't matter what we were dressed like...
Exhibit A.--Stan, Jared, Kevin, and Curtis out front in their undy-pants.
I especially love Kevin's XL pair and the fact that he is wearing shoes.
Cute little Curty is in the can.
Exhibit B.--Fashion was not a necessity when it came to playing hard.
I think just about every summer, we (some of my siblings and a few neighbor kids), would get several shovels out of the garage and head out to the backyard--to dig ourselves a mud swimming pool in a spot near the garden.  It wasn't just a mud wading pool, it was a mud swimming pool.  The "pool" was equipped with a slide, diving board (2x4), and a life guard (wearing a whistle).  We probably spent as much time making the pool as we did swimming in it.  We took our pool building very seriously.  Oh how I wish we had a picture of it all. 

After swimming and rolling around in the mud, we would head into the house in our swimming suits.  You guessed it---muddy from head to toe.  It seems like mud was in every crevasse--even our ears.  Gross.

We would all pile in the bath tub and shower off together.  I am quite certain that we left the bathroom and tub in a huge muddy mess, thinking nothing of it.  Isn't that just a kid for ya?

My mom was always so incredibly patient with us as we used our imaginations and carried out our hair-brained ideas.  What a saint!  Thanks Mom!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Zombie Land

Me-n-my-kids
I have been walking around the house like a zombie all day.  It is like my head is in a fog.  My lovely night started with me going to bed a little late, then being woke up at 1:00 a.m. by Haley with a burning fever-- 102.5 degrees. Goody-goody-gum-drops! 

I woke John up to help me, because she was feeling dizzy and I was trying to get her some medicine.  When she got back in bed she needed a cold rag to help cool her blazing hot back.  So, I decided to lay down by Haley for a bit.  She insisted that I tell her the story, "Tuffy the kitten".  That is a story that my mom used to tell her kids when she was putting them to bed.  There's nothing like trying to tell a bed time story in the middle of the night.  After awhile, we thought she was settled and went back to bed.

2 minutes later, Haley is in my face asking if she can sleep with us.  She climbed in and snuggled right up against me.  Anyone that has ever slept in the same bed with a kid knows that once you are in a position, you are THERE for the duration.  After about an hour, my right hip was crying out for mercy.  So, I scooped up my pillow and headed for Haley's bed.

This is the part of the story that I need to apologize to Haley.  "HONEY, YOUR BED IS HORRIBLE! I'M SORRY!"  I would say is was more like sleeping on a rock or a cinder block.  In hind sight, I should have scooped HER up instead of my pillow.  A mistake that will not be made again.  My hips hurt, my back hurts.  It was a night of punishment. 

This morning I was having a very hard time getting out of that awful bed.  I was so tired, I was just in and out of sleep.  All of the sudden I heard the sound of glass shattering.  That is definitely a mom's alarm clock, and I was up.  Jace was in the kitchen trying to make his own breakfast and had dropped a plate that burst into several hundred pieces.  I just knew it was going to be a great day!

Guess it's time to go mattress shopping!

Monday, January 24, 2011

2 week weigh in....

I'm sure you have all been waiting on pins and needles, wondering about how I am doing in my "Biggest Loser" Challenge.  Okay, so maybe I am full of crap and nobody gives a dang.  But, I am going to post my two week weigh in results anyway.  My first weigh in, I lost 8 pounds.  (Just a little bit of trivia---the average human head weighs 8 pounds.)  Now, I MUST mention that it is only the teeny tiny tip of the LARGE iceberg.  (If you have NO flippen clue what Biggest Loser Challenge I am talking about click here.)  Brynn told me tonight that my face isn't as round as it used to be.  I just wanted to say, "Why thank you sweetums.  Come here so mama can kick your butt!"  Kids just always know what to say.  Tee hee. 
For the first weigh in, I came in 9th place out of 37 girls.  It is a start, I guess.  I don't think people really notice you have lost weight until you have lost more then 20 pounds.

The girl that is in charge of the challenge sent all the participants this email, and I thought it was pretty cool...

I just thought I would send all of you this fun fact! I thought it would be fun to keep a running total of weight loss and percentages for the men's team and the women's team. Not part of the contest....but just fun to see!
  • WOMEN: Lost a total of 130.2 pounds today with a percentage of 2.67%
  • MEN: Lost a total of 113.4 pounds today with a percentage of 3.48%
WOW....all together you lost a total of 243.6 pounds in 2 weeks!!! You are all awesome!!!

I hope I can continue on with full force!  It's kinda hard when you are an old fart.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

DARE graduation

A few nights ago Brynn had her DARE graduation.  The DARE program teaches the kids the dangers and harm that drugs can do to them and others.  From the start of the school until now, they have had a DARE officer come to their school once a week and meet with them. 

The kids were challenged to complete several different tasks while they were in DARE.

1- Keep their room clean
2- No soda 
3- Do a good deed everyday
4-No T.V. for 2 weeks
5- Dress for success (dress up once a week for school)

Brynn worked hard and completed all 5 challenges!  I think it was very hard for her to go without T.V. for 2 weeks, and at first I didn't know if she could complete the task.  She DID it!!  I was proud of her!  During those 2 weeks she spent lots of time on her bed, reading.  I think it was a good experience and taught her that there are some great books out there.  I think she enjoyed her time away from the T.V.  Brynn was also able to keep her room clean, which I LOVED.  I should say that she was able to keep HER side of the room clean.  Now, if it could just rub off on Riley.  Wishful thinking.

There were only about 4 kids that completed all 5 challenges, and they were able to pick out some DARE logo gear for their hard work.  Brynn came home with a new backpack. 

At the end of the graduation, some of the DARE officers performed some "rock" songs on stage.  (Several of the officers are in my Stake, and such great guys!)  They invited all the DARE students to come down to the front while they played.  It was fun to watch the kids having a great time dancing to the music.  I think that they felt very grown up, like they were at a real concert. 

They thought about doing away with the DARE program this year (budget cuts), and I'm glad that they didn't.  I think that it was good for Brynn to learn about the dangers of drugs and also I think it taught her some responsibility---after all, it takes a village, right?  We are proud of you Brynny!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Happy Birthday to my WONDERFUL mom!!

Happy 69th Birthday to the most amazing woman that I have ever met!  When you look up the word saint in the dictionary it says,

saint(seynt) - Deanna
–noun
1. any of certain persons of exceptional holiness of life
2. a person of great holiness, virtue, or benevolence
3. a founder, sponsor, or patron, as of a movement or organization.  (She does have almost 58 grand kids you know)!!
And then it has a picture of my mom...
A few words to describe my mom...
  • SERVICE - that is her middle name....Ask anyone!  She always says that she likes to feel needed.
  • KIND - She HONESTLY never ever says a bad word about ANYONE, and I don't care how bad they are!!
  • GIVING - She gives of her time, and love, with no thought of herself.  She will most definitely take care of someone elses needs before her own.  She is last on the list.  That means she eats last, goes to bed last, etc.  She will gladly volunteer for unwanted tasks, and do it with a glad heart and a smile.
  • POSITIVE - She is always saying the phrase, "It's all progress" just to make you feel good when you are running raged.
  • I could go on and on.....
If you know my mom, I think you will agree!! She is just one of a kind and simply amazing.  This tiny woman has had 13 children and now 57 1/2 grand kids.  (We call her a little pocket rocket).

All of the grand kids just flock to her like flies to syrup.  I am so blessed to have her as my mom.  I love you mom, and hope you have a great birthday!!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

The Biggest Loser Competition


A friend of mine recently posted information on Facebook about a Biggest Loser Competition in my area.  The invitation went out to anyone that was interested in entering.  I went back and forth in my mind as to whether I wanted to enter or not.  I didn't want to even mention it to anyone until I knew if I was committed or not.  First of all---YES, I NEEDED to enter but at the same time, I was very afraid of failing miserably!  I am also a completely competitive person.  When I play, I play to win.  John thinks it is very funny to watch me compete.  I'm not sure where I got such a competitive streak, but it's there in bright bold colors. 

What to do what to do..........So yes, on Friday I went and paid my $25 and did my "official" weigh in.  It was a bit humiliating, but done very private.  Only the girl recording my weight actually got to see the BIG LARGE NUMBERssssssss staring her in the face. 

When I first got there, there were several people there to be weighed in.  I'm sure that I walked in the door and instantly had a puzzled look on my face.  All the girls were quite thin, and really didn't look like they even had a pound to lose.  I just wanted to tell them to make their $25 check out to me. 

To paint a picture---I showed up to the big weigh in, in a big unflattering "puffy coat", wearing John's old sweats and yesterday's makeup.  Did I mention that I was UN-showered?  On a side note...my teeth were brushed...give me SOME credit!  I'm sure I made quite the impression to all the girls in the house.  OOOOOh boy.  When we were done weighing in, I did the "walk of shame" out to my car. 

I must say that it has kind of been a rough couple of days.  My body is asking me why I am up and moving and not sitting down with a Mountain Dew in my hand. 

Thank HEAVENS I have an app on my phone that completely helps me keep track of EVERYTHING.... calories, workout, water, etc.  It does the works baby, and I don't know if I could be so diligent without it.  I think it has inspired John and all the kids to be a little more active, which is a good thing for us all.

I'm not so sure that I even have a chance in this competition, but I feel like if I can keep working towards my goal, I have already won.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Wait a second...can this be right?

Brynn just turned 12 last week and now is officially out of the Primary and into Young Womens.  She could hardly wait!!  Several weeks ago, leading up to her birthday, she would ask me if she could go to Mutual with Riley and I.  Time and time again, I had to remind her that she was not old enough yet, and could go soon.  I let her come with us one time several weeks ago when the Young Women made blankets, and that gave her a taste of what to expect and look forward to.  Last Sunday was the big day...she said goodbye to Primary and Hello to Young Womens.  I can't believe that I now have 2 daughters in Young Womens!!  Ouch!

I had to laugh on Sunday...Brynn stood up to share her testimony in Young Womens and the first thing she said was, "I can't believe how nice Riley is at church".  I had to laugh when I looked at Riley's red face.  Brynn is kind of a say-it-like-it-is gal.  Hmmmm, I wonder where she gets that from???

Brynn LOVES--
  • Her blanket---She still sleeps with it every night.  I don't know how much longer that thing is going to hold together.
  • To cook---She will help you with ANYTHING that you ask her to do in the kitchen, when it comes to making food.
  • To do anything crafty---sew, paint, etc.
  • To keep things organized---her drawers are always neat and tidy.  I LOVE that too!
We are very lucky to have our sweet little "Brynny" in our family.

I took this picture at my sister's house on New Years Eve.
The kids were singing Happy Birthday SO LOUD
that it was making Brynn laugh.


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Do you know what I LOVE....

I just love how much fun Jace and Haley have together.  They are just two best little buddies.  They always seem to be hanging out together and following each other around.  Jace is a nice older brother to Haley.  He very rarely teases her, which I find very hard to believe!  That is usually the job of the other brother!  Don't misunderstand this post and think that they are perfect and never fight, because that is certainly not the case.  They do have times that they fight and get on each others nerves.  But, more often then not you find them hanging out together and having a good time.  I LOVE that, and I LOVE them!

Haley's face is a crack up in this picture!
This is hilarious...Jace was playing a video game
and Haley kept telling me that she was his seat belt!  Love those two!!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Ringin' in the New Year - 2011

For the past 11 years we have had the tradition of ringing in the New Year with a wild family party.  This year, as most of the other years, we had the party at my sister Monica's house.  I guess that is what she gets for having such a large house.  Thanks Monica and Dave!  I'm not even sure what the count was for the total number of people there, but I know it was a lot and I'm too lazy to count.  He he!

Like usual, we had more food then we needed.  Shrimp, pigs in a blanket, veggie/fruit trays, cookies, 7 layer dip, deli style sandwiches, the list goes on.  Good grief, I'm hungry just thinking about it.  And of course you always eat until you are about to go into a food induced coma.

We played several games.  I think my most favorite was "Say Anything".  That game can be so funny when you are with a group that will really just do that...Say Anything! 

Every year we have a pinata for the kids.  This year, my brother-in-law, Rocky made the pinata.  He is an incredibly talented free lance artist.  He made it nice and large and indestructible...we need it to last through allllllll those kids!  It was big enough to hold LOTS of candy!

We ate, played games, ate some more, danced, broke a pinata, ate, and partied hard!  Oh, and did I mention that we ate!?  I think need to set some New Years resolutions after all that eating!

I am very blessed to have such a great and fun family!  I love them all!!

Waiting for the pinata smashing to begin!


The pinata and Peek-a-boo Dave!



I loved Haley's face as she was hitting it.  She was giving it her all!


It appears that Jace was relieving all his stress on the "bumble".


Brynn taking her best shot!

Go Riley!

Candy grab!  Everyone got MORE then enough!

Conga line!

Dancing in the New Year


Shortly after midnight Haley had enough!