Thursday, April 29, 2010

This is what I think are…

The 3 worst things about parenting:

1.  Sibling fights

2.  Potty-training

3.  When your 18 month old poops EVERY FREAKING TIME she gets in the tub, with her brother, necessitating a quick shower of both in a new poop-free area, the sanitizing of every single one of the gross bathtub toys and a detailed scrub of the disgusting leftover mess.  All during the BUSIEST time of the day.


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(When she was sweet and innocent in the bath.)

Monday, April 26, 2010

Quick Quote


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In need of a romantic simile?

From Jane:

"Mom, I love you like hot dogs. And you know how I feel about them!"

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Hard work + Lots of Time =

Our kids participated in our school’s Math Team this year. 

None of us had any idea how much time it would be.  They met twice a week, after school, and did 1-2 extra homework assignments that required roughly 2 hours each.  And it was completely voluntary!  We (the parents) felt like quitting a couple of times there, so we can’t imagine how the kids felt. 

Emma’s Fifth Grade team competed a few weeks ago and did well (13th out of 49 schools), but the real payoff came last Friday night, when Gabe’s Fourth Grade team competed.

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His team took FIRST PLACE!  They are the Eastern Washington long-division-story-problem-negative-integer champs~

They were feeling pretty confident, but I was kind of poo-pooing it, assuming it was naiveté on Gabe’s part.  But when 4 of his teammates were in the top 6 of the individual award portion, we started getting excited.  Gabe’s team had won the team round in his room and so we knew they’d done well in that area, too.  We were thrilled when they announced that our school was the winner.  It was fun because cousin/best friend Mallory did it, too:

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Here’s a short video of the announcement (see if you can spot 3 of 5 Romney kids):

Anyway, I realize this is a boring post to everyone else, but it must be noted for posterity:  my kids took on a challenge, stuck with it and performed well.  We are incredibly proud of both Emma and Gabe for doing something that was hard for them!

Friday, April 16, 2010

A List

Annoying stuff about today:

1.  Wearing shorts for the first time and realizing I have Mom Legs (white, slightly thick, vein-y).

2.  Having a playdate at my house where 2 of the boys kept leaving out the third. 

3.  Faith not being able to decide if she wants to be ON or OFF of the trampoline.

4.  Leaving the last waffle cooking in the waffle maker for 30 minutes.

5.  Leaving my free cookie coupon at home on my lunch date with Ryan.

6.  Kids who think that getting the drink out of the cup with the straw requires tipping it upside down. 

7.  Seeing the first quote on the estimate of the car Ryan hit and thinking “oh, that’s not too bad” and then having the lady say, “No, there’s another page.”

8.  Coming home from the gym at 6:30 a.m., noticing the TV paused on “Arthur” (we have a no TV on school days rule), and then watching the Dishonesty Theatrics from the Morning TV Watcher:  (fake yawn) “Oh, hey…I just woke up.  I’m tired today.”


Good stuff about today:

1.  Noticing that I’m awesomer at “wall-sits” since I’ve started my marathon training, and, that despite the ZERO weight loss, my thighs look a teensy bit better than usual.

2.  The first really warm day here in Spokane, and the park day with friends that happened because of it.

3.  Lunch with Ryan. (We drove back home to get the cookie coupons.  Of course.)

4.  A nice yummy nap next to Seth.

5.  A new fun book to read: The Prizewinner of Defiance, Ohio.

6.  Our Friday jobs being done on Thursday, so everyone just gets to enjoy the beginning of the weekend.

7.  A babysitter hired for Faith tonight so that we can enjoy Gabe’s Math Tournament and the dessert after, sans 18 month old.

8.  Faith’s response when you ask her what a camel says.  “thpbthbpth!”

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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Why Spring Break was actually fun

Strikes against Spring Break this year:

1.  First time in years we didn’t have a trip to Utah planned

2.  Rain and snow predicted all week

3.  The Big Bad Budget made planning outings for 5-7 people a little tough

So, I needed a plan.  (Everything’s right in JessicaLand when there is a plan).  I executed the plan pretty well and, all in all, we had a lovely week.

Monday was Friend/Game Day.  Here are the kids with the Hunters and there 3.5 hour Monopoly game. 

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Tuesday was Craft Day (which is big for me, considering that loathing I feel for crafts).

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We mostly just dyed Easter Eggs, but I was prepared with paper and yarn crafts, as well.

Wednesday was Lunch at Costco Day. 


It was also Friend-Whose-Husband-Owns-The-Local-Football-Team-Invites-Us-To-Run-Around-Like-Sweaty-Crazies-In-Their-Indoor-Practice-Field-With-Half-Of-The-Moms-I-Know Day, but I forgot to take pictures.

Thursday was the Hike Day. 


Ryan’s dream for as long as we’ve been married is for me to let him take some days off and JUST STAY HOME.  (I’m such a traveler that I always make him used Vacation Time to go on trips).  So that’s what he did.  He took Thursday and Friday off and we hiked the 7 mile loop by the lake near our house. 

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SETH WALKED EVERY STEP.  Is he awesome or what? 

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This was one of the moments that you think will happen all the time when you dream about motherhood, but in real life it only happens every magical once in a while. 


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The kids were cheerful, the weather was good, we talked and laughed, picnicked and got lost in the mud, sang and accomplished something. 

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I got a little choked up, because it was perfect.

Friday was Swim Day


We used our  Christmas present from Uncle Sam (money toward a family outing) to go to the local indoor swimming facility and out to dinner.  Faith lah-hoved it!

Saturday was Easter Egg hunt day.  (These are pictures my friend’s husband took my kids.  What husband actually takes pictures, ESPECIALLY of someone else’s kid?!)



Ryan took the kids to the stake Easter Egg hunt where the weather was horrible, but the kids, of course, didn’t mind.

Sunday was Easter/Conference/dinner with the Daines Day.  No pictures, but lots of fun.

I was actually sad when it was over!  That never happens at the end of a vacation!  I’d tell you I hire out, but I have a feeling it has less to do with superior planning skills and more to do with luck. 

Thursday, April 8, 2010

It’s Mathematically Delicious


What happens when you give your kids on the math team

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the “Lucky Charms Math” worksheet on St. Patrick’s Day:

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Instead of counting the number of marshmallow hearts in their bowl—

they give you the mean, median and mode.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

March Summary


On St. Patrick’s Day, Lucky the Leprechaun showed up AGAIN:

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My kids look hammered in the picture AGAIN:

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The Elf ears crack me up, AGAIN:

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The Corned Beef looks disgusting, AGAIN (how do you make a lump of fatty beef look pretty, anyway?):

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The kids would not cooperate for a picture, AGAIN:

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(Can’t you just hear me: “I put all this work into this day and all I want is a simple picture!!  What, you really can’t just sit still and look at the camera for two seconds??”)

So I took matters into my own hands, AGAIN:

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One Saturday, we also took a super long bike ride to this park, with cousin Mallory:

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It took us about 1 hour to get to there, along the Centennial trail that starts about a mile from our house.  I was pulling Faith and Seth in the trailer.  On the way home, Ryan insisted on taking the bike with the trailer (I had been wanting it because I hadn’t made it to the gym that morning) and we made it home 15 minutes faster.  It was kind of embarrassing that he’s that much stronger than me. 


Faith stops whatever she is doing, like, 10 times a day, to fold her arms and yell out “Pahr!”  It’s silly.

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We also had Pinewood Derby this month (the first pack meeting I haven’t been in charge of in 18 months, as I was released and called as primary pianist).

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We realized that this little baby, a pre-cut kit purchased at Michaels:

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weighed HALF of what it was supposed to weigh.  As you’ll notice in the picture above, Ryan spent quite a lot of the Derby re-gluing stacks of pennies to the car.

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Gabe ended up winning second place, which may or may not be related to the fact that more and more pennies kept getting glued on without any accountability to the scale.  There are certain parents who have big issues with following game rules exactly and there are certain parents who don’t.  All let you guess which is which.


Emma finished the Book of Mormon in March, having read every page by herself.  We are so proud of her and that accomplishment that we actually implemented a new family award in order to bestow it on her.  (The Family Star gets a framed printed sheet of paper and the “special plate” at the awards dinner.  Look for it in summaries to come!)

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She’s also discovered the Harry Potter series (NOT pictured above), which brings almost as much joy to this mother’s heart as her completion of the scriptures.  It’s a close second.


March’s summary is over, but we have a spring break and a first half of April summary coming up, so don’t be dismayed—an over-abundance of Romney family activities are on their way!