Sunday, March 30, 2008

Update from DH's parents who are teaching English in China...I just really enjoyed their email so I thought I'd share it.

Hello family and friends,
Today is March 31st and we are enjoying our first spring in China. The weather is in the 60's each day but still is in the low 40's or cooler at night. Today the heat was turned off at our university. Throughout northern China, the government turns off the heat mid-March so we feel fortunate that we had 2 extra weeks of warmth. Our apartment is cool but manageable. From what we understand we only have about a month of spring then hot weather arrives. Also famous in this area during the spring is the sand storms. They can be horrible but so far we've only had one minor storm. I looked out the kitchen window and saw little white things falling from the sky and since it wasn't cold, I knew it couldn't be snow. When I asked a Chinese professor friend what we could expect as far as spring sand storms are concerned, she informed me that we wouldn't be having them this year because the government wouldn't allow them due to the Olympics!
Speaking of the Olympics, Beijing is marching closer to the big event. We tried to visit the Olympic Headquarters building last week but security was tight so we didn't get in. With the situation in Tibet things are pretty tense as far as having the successful Olympics they have been planning for all these years. We can't get any news on Tibet, all sources are blocked by the government. We are planning a trip there in June if things are stable by then. Some feel it will remain closed to tourists for quite some time. We'll see. We have enjoyed watching the constructions of the venues and many of our students are Olympic volunteers. They are proud to be able to serve their country. Although one boy shared his regret that his assignment is to clean toilets in the athlete's village! He wasn't too happy about that.
We are having a wonderful time with our classes this term. These are amazing people and we love being with them. They seem so interested in the differences between China and America. They are so realistic in their perceptions on the whole. Though too much of their impression of America comes from movies and television. They are fond of "Friends", "Desperate Housewives" and "Prison Break". They are amazed that we don't watch those shows!
We have added a few activities to enrich our experience here. Barry is taking ping pong lessons from a Phd student of his. They play every Saturday and Barry has even won a game or two (although he was spotted 8 points to begin). If this man chose, Barry would never score a point! I am taking Tai Chi classes and love the smoothness and grace of this - at least my teacher is graceful. I look rather silly, I'm afraid! I continue my jogging. The only limitation is my feet - because we walk so much I find my feet quite sore by the week's end.
We have been able to attend many concerts and music performances while here in Beijing. We have so many places to visit before our time ends here. In May we will go on a short four day trip to Inner Mongolia. Our students are always asking us where we have been in China and are so jealous that we've seen more places than they have. We try to assure them that we didn't travel when we were university students either.

I am a Mom and Em's New Dress

How I know I am a Mom

Within ten minutes I had to clean Ballerina's poop out of the tub, wipe her nose for 10,000th time today, plunge the toilet, chase Ballerina around the house to get her dressed, and wipe Em's bum. (Em and Ballerina have this strange sister connection where they frequently have bowel movements at the same time of day)

Em's new dress

Anth and I got away to Value Village to look for 50% off deals. We found this cute little dress for $3.50. Anth says she looks like she is ready to go on safari.

Spring Break '08

I love Spring Break. I like having a break from running the kids to school and we get to all be home together. At first we thought everyone was getting over their colds but Val and I still weren't feeling too good. Em got conjunctivitis but it cleared up quickly. My favorite part of Spring Break is DH being home. He helped me out a ton around the house. He did yard work. And he got a break from his hectic schedule. Since he was home I got to go out and do errands and do some playing with my friends without the kids. I am still fighting my cold and it remains mildly annoying.

Our first big event was Easter. We actually asked the Easter bunny to come Saturday morning so we would have time to hunt and enjoy our goodies. The rest of the day was lovely, the kids played outside all day. Cor played so long he got sun stroke and threw up in the middle of church the next day. The puke got all the way down the hall, all over himself, and all over DH. I AM SO GRATEFUL IT WASN'T ME. But DH will need some more time before he finds it amusing.

Ballerina finds her eggs.
Em gets a squishy frog that she loves. She played with it for 3 days straight. It looks like a real frog. She likes reptiles, amphibians, and dinosaurs.
Cory searching for eggs and putting them in his big mouth bunny. We make these bunnies every year out of milk jugs and cotton balls.
Cor collecting things to take home. Sunday night we decided we wanted to spend one day at the beach so we looked up the weather. The forecast said Monday would be the nicest day so we went. We went to a fab restaurant reccommended by Anth. The view was beautiful and the food was good. We tried a new beach because I wanted to try a new beach each time we go. DH really wanted to go back to Siletz Bay because we had so much fun there last time. After eating lunch we drove a little way then DH pulled into Gleneden Beach. It was really fun. Lots of climbing and sunshine. The wind was mild and the waves were huge. So very uncharacteristic of the Oregon Coast that I didn't even think to bring Sunblock. So we didn't stay on the beach as long as we would have liked. After that we went to the outlet mall and scored some great deals and got some cute things for the kids and myself. We didn't stay there too long because Ballerina was tired, throwing fits, and constantly running off.
Mya and the huge waves. She is the only one brave enough to put her feet in the water. We heard on the radio on the way home that it was going to snow at the coast that night. It was hard to believe since it was such a beautiful day. But by the weekend we heard they had 4 inches of snow.
One of Dad's 5 million trips climbing the rocks with the little girls.
Hailstorm in our back yard. This week was crazy weather. All in one day we would have snow, rain, wind, hail, and sunshine.
By the last day of the Spring Break it was sunny again. I really love my daffodils. They make me happy. The kids want to pick them all but I try to convince them they look beautiful right where they are. You can see the tulips are coming up next.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Anti-Procrastination Day...2007 Easter Project

Here is a project that I bought all the stuff for last year and was so ambitious that I would get it done but as you can see one year later I am finally doing it (that's actually really good, for me). I got the idea from a Pottery Barn catalog. I like all their stuff but it's grossly overpriced. They had them, customized with names, for $12 which isn't a bad price but I got stuff to make four of them for around the same price as one. But the catch is you actually have to DO the project for it to be a good deal. I had also bought a couple years ago these little crocheted flowers for some project and never used them so they look cute right next to Em's name. So far I only have Em's done and it took a few hours but I am hopeful I will get another one done today and maybe 2 tomorrow. At the bottom I used some of Mya's beads. The rick rack is my favorite because it's so cute and has a cute name. Rick rack, rick rack!
It has this cute little pocket that you can put cards or gifts in. I expect the girls to put their toys and other favorite things in there. I put interfacing on the back side of the egg to help reinforce it. My plan is to make each egg unique. I have green, yellow, and blue fabric for the others. If I had more hand embroidery skills I would have done more stitches. My sewing machine has some fun stitches so I'll try that on the next one.

When I asked Ballerina if she like them she said it looked "wonderful." If I am really good I will make one for Me and DH. But I that's not likely to happen...this year.

Yay for me. I got well enough to go to Bunco and I won! I won the kids Caribou game and everyone suggested that I give it to the kids for Easter and I am considering it. It will help keep everyone entertained during Spring Break next week.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008


Ballerina is such an interesting little character. She keeps us entertained every day. Right now she is sick so all her personality is focused on being dramatic. She has had a cough and runny nose for over a week, last week she got pink eye, and last night she started a fever.

For her runny nose she wipes it all the way across her whole face. That is why she got pink eye because she would wipe it into her eye. When I told her she has pink eye she got so excited because she loves the color pink. At first she didn't mind her eye drops but now she hates them. She will let me do it with out too much of a fight.

She slept all night without coughing but this morning she was coughing so much she gagged and threw up several times. Then she started shaking. Crying and whining the whole time. I got her dressed in her new t-shirt that has a little pocket in front. She noticed the pocket and started pulling at it frantically and talking so quickly I couldn't understand her. Finally I figured out what she wanted. She was determined she had to have money in that little pocket. So I got a quarter and put it in there. She was very pleased. It would all be more amusing if I wasn't battling a fever and sore throat myself.

The funniest thing she does lately is say yes but it sounds like yesh-s. It makes us laugh because she says it just like Michael Scott on The Office. Besides that she says the cutest grown up words in her little girl voice.

Last week I asked her if she wanted to go to play group and she said, "No, it's too dangerous." Em was there and started laughing and told her playgroup is not dangerous. She used that word again later about something else. The other day she told me she did not feel well.

If you ask her how old she is she'll make up a new number every time. I am trying to get her to learn her age but she has decided she does not want to be two. She wants to be four, five, six, seven, anything that sounds big. One night Cor asked me why she was eating with her hands and I told him because she is a baby. She immediately responded, "I am not a baby!" I think because she speaks so well and understands so much that the other kids are surprised when she still does some baby things. We did just give away the high chair and I think that was a mistake because she is all over the place during dinner and can hardly concentrate on eating.

Last but not least her favorite part of being bigger, opening the refrigerator. She is always in there.

Monday, March 17, 2008

First Annual Sister's Weekend February 22nd to the 24th, 2008

I wish I had taken more pictures. For my oldest Sister Staci's birthday Jenna and bought her a plane ticket to fly over from Boise. The fares were so cheap we just couldn't resist. We had all arranged with our husband's to be around to watch our kids. Friday morning I picked up Staci at the airport. We met up with Jenna at her work then we went to lunch. We had sushi. I only ate mostly to fully cooked items but it was really good. The restaurant was really fun. Even Ballerina and Em enjoyed it. After we took Jenna back to work Staci and went to Value Village. She found some great deals. I chased the girls around the store. Ballerina figured out her shirt had snaps and took it off and ran around the store topless for a while.

We went and picked up my kids from school then we went home until Scott got there. We picked up Mom and went over to Seldie's Salon where she was working. Mom got a trim and I got my eyebrows waxed and a trim. The wax didn't hurt that bad so now I want to keep doing it. I want to get my lip waxed but she said that one really does hurt bad the first time.

After that we went to The Graze at the church to sample foods and get recipes for food storage. That was really fun and we got so full. SIL Brenda met up with us there. We went over to Jenna's afterwards and chatted and Seldie gave us pedicures. I stayed up till about 1:00 am but Staci and Jenna stayed up till almost 5:00 am. They were so tired the next day. I was more tired then they were but I figured it was because a few days later I got a bad cold.

Saturday morning Jenna drove her Land Cruiser and we all piled in. Brittany went with us even though she really wasn't feeling well. We went to the beauty supply store which is in the pictures below. Jenna was the driver for our Saturday outings. She was sporting her 80's hair for fun. She usually has it straight but she looked really cute with it wavy.
Mom gets the cutest outfit award for our Sister's weekend.
Seldie provided the great deals on hair supplies. And she gave us all great advice and what to get for our hair.
Staci has the greatest smile and her hair always looks perfect, even when she wakes up in the morning.
Here is a group shot of us at Ikea. Left to right: Seldie, Me, SIL Brenda, Mom (Tanya), SIL Brittany, Staci.
We spent many many hours at Ikea. Some our group got lost and kept going in circles. Ikea can be soooo overwhelming. Brittany had to go home after that, her cold had worn her out. We went to this little restaurant by the truck stop. There were very few people in there and the food was not great but the waitress was really good and we could talk and be giggly and no one cared.

Sunday Staci went to Church with us. Then later Jenna took Staci back to the airport. We all had such a good time. We are excited to see what we can do for next year.

Pros and Cons

I came up with these while I was in the shower.

Cons of being sick:

  • feeling achy all over
  • looking like a total slob
  • limited patience for my family
  • someone else in the house is sick too
  • people feel sorry for me, I really don't like that for some reason
  • no kissing or lovin' my DH
  • cabin fever
  • feel like eating all the time
  • it reminds me of the first trimester of pregnancy
  • DH keeps looking at me like he is waiting for me to get better
  • all the house cleaning and laundry is getting backed up
  • no social life (like missing bunco)
  • kids watch lots of tv and eat not so healthy food

Pros of being sick:

  • laying around
  • more time to read if I can sit up
  • eating all the time and not worrying about if it's healthy
  • feel no obligation to go anywhere
  • DH cleans, makes dinner, or anything else I guilt him into
  • DH has to take care of anything disgusting
  • everyone's sooooo happy when I get better
  • no bra or makeup or fixing my hair for 2 days

This makes four...

This is the 4th time this winter that I have been sick with a cold. Well my kids have all had a cough and runny nose this week. Cor was home for 2 days with pink eye and Ballerina started pink eye last Friday. Em and Mya have both did not want to be sick so they mentally willed themselves to get better. Em's motivation is that she does not like going to the doctor. So when she would cough she would tell me it was just a little one and that she was all better. Mya is so determined not to miss school and all her friends. Cor enjoyed his home time and entertained the girls the whole time. Ballerina has suffered and whined through the whole thing. I don't blame her, she gets colds so easily.

My cold feels the same as the sinus infection I had only 3 weeks ago. But that one I had a fever of nearly 105 degrees. This fever hasn't gotten over 100 degrees. So I think my body is fighting it. I have been pretty achy and it's upset my digestive system. It started coming on while I was at a piano concert with Mya Saturday night. We went to see James O'neil Miner. It was really fun but I was freezing the whole time. And my throat got sore. I was still freezing when we got home so I took my temperature. Sunday I spent most of the day on the couch. Ballerina sat with me for most of it. FOUR COLDS this winter. Yuck! I usually only get real sick once each winter and maybe once in Spring/Summer time.

Unfortunately, I had kissed my DH several times that day so it is very likely that he will get sick too. He says he is going to get sick during Spring Break so I won't make him do yard work.

I am having serious cabin fever and I may just spend the day writing emails to friends so I feel like I have a life. It's so sad. I had planned to have our big mouth bunny party today but that will not happen. Today is Cor's half birthday so we'll try to do something fun for that.


Yesterday Mya and Cory made their leprechaun traps and put them on the porch. They put their shiniest pennies inside to attract the leprechaun. The leprechaun did escape their traps but he left a variety of green candies for them. And he left green footprints all over the porch. One of these years we'll catch a leprechaun and he'll have to show where he has hid his pot of gold.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Tagged by Becca! to tell about my marriage...

How long have you and your significant other been together? We have known each other since we were babies, I guess. I fell in love with Scott when I was 11 years old. Or as in love as you can be at 11. I know that's sounds young to me now. We "went out" when we were in 8th grade. Which meant we wrote each other notes and held hands when our parents weren't looking. He was completely obsessed with me until I broke up with him after our long romance of four months. We became friends again in our Freshman year of high school when he became interested in my best friend. We dated a little our Senior year and one semester at college. We did have a major blow up at the end of our senior year because he went out with another one of my best friends. He asked me to wait for him while he served a mission for the church in Argentina, but again four months later I "Dear Johned" him. Because I was dating one of his best friends. After his mission we started dating and about a year later we got married. I know that's really long for Mormon Standard Engagement time.

*He is still completely obsessed with me.

Who eats more? That depends on the time of the month. But usually it's him.

Who said "I love you" first? I don't think either one of us would remember but my guess is ME.

Who is taller? I am barely 5 feet tall and he is 5' 10". Everyone is taller than me.

Who sings better? He does.

Who is smarter? He would say me but he is definitely smarter.

Who does the laundry? I do and I am very protective about my laundry and how it should be done.

Who does the dishes? Both of us.

Who sleeps on the right side of the bed? I am not sure which is the right side. Is it the side where if your are laying in bed, on your back or standing at the end of the bed, looking down at it? If I am standing at the end of the bed then he sleeps on the right and I sleep right next to him because I am always cold.

Who pays the bills? He makes the money and I pay the bills.

Who mows the lawn? He does, I have never mowed a lawn in my whole life.

Who cooks dinner? I do most of the time, but he can and does when I need him to.

Who drives when you are together? He does because my driving irritates him.

Who is more stubborn? I think it's about equal.

Who is the first to admit when they are wrong? I am.

Who's parent's do you see the most? It's about the same.

Who kissed who first? He kissed me first.

Who proposed? He did.

Who is more sensitive? He is! That's a lie. It's about equal.

Who has more friends? I do.

Who has more siblings? Me.

I Finished!

I just finished reading Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Everyone told me that it was great and definitely not disappointing. I was worried for a little while because I thought maybe Harry would die. I was going to be really disappointed if he died. I enjoyed how everything came together and especially how Neville was the hero in the end. Even Professor Trelawney got a chance to be useful. It was a fun read and the good guy won in the end. I can't believe I finished all of the books and I really had never planned on reading them. Thanks to Anth for telling me I must read them. The first one was so good that I had to keep going. I am completely amazed at J. K. Rowling and her ability to keep such detailed and exciting story going for seven books.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

What do you think?

Does bimonthly mean twice a month or every two months?

Tell me what you think? Don't cheat by searching it on the internet.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Friendly Survey

I had a couple people send me this email, all of which were people who read my blog so I thought I would just fill it out here.

  1. Were you named after anyone? No, but my name means "knowing woman."
  2. When was the last time you cried? I can't remember, it's been more than a month or two.
  3. What is your favorite lunch meat? That turkey with the pepper on the edge, I have a hard time with any lunch meat that is even slightly slimy. Most often I go for a honey ham.
  4. Do you want to have kids (or more if you already have children)? I have four and that's enough for now.
  5. Name someone you would like to meet (dead or alive)? I can never think of anyone when I'm asked this question, it's too much pressure.
  6. Do you use sarcasm a lot? Only when necessary.
  7. Do you still have your tonsils? Yes.
  8. Would you bungee jump? No, but I would like to sky dive. I don't know why but that seems less scary.
  9. Do you like your handwriting? No, that's why I blog.
  10. What is your favorite cereal? Oatmeal.
  11. What type of shoes do you wear most often? Heels or tennis shoes? Tennis shoes.
  12. Do you think you are strong? Yes! But no one else thinks I am except for my cousin Keros.
  13. What is your favorite icecream? Brown cow
  14. What is the first thing you notice about people? This is a hard one, I don't really think about it but it's got to be how their clothes fit.
  15. Red or Pink? Red.
  16. What is the least favorite thing about yourself? My sensitive feet.
  17. What is the last good movie you saw in the theater? Live Free or Die Hard. I laughed so hard.
  18. What color pants and shoes are you wearing? When Becca sent this to me I was wearing the exact same thing she was wearing, weird!
  19. What was the last thing you ate? Buffalo Chip Cookies.
  20. What was the last CD you purchased? It's been so long I can't remember.
  21. If you could go anywhere on vacation tomorrow, where would you go? Canada. False. Any of kind of beautiful, warm island where I could just lay on the beach for a few days.
  22. Favorite smell? My husband.
  23. Who was the last person you talked to on the phone? My neighbor, Annie.
  24. Do you like the person who sent this to you? Yes, I like people who like me.
  25. Favorite sport to watch? I don't really like watching sports, I have a very short attention span.
  26. Do you where contacts? No, but I used to teach people how to put them in and take them out.
  27. Favorite food? Steak.
  28. Do you prefer scary movies or happy endings? Happy endings.
  29. What is the last book you read? Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier.
  30. What is your dream job? Being a Mom, I am living the dream!
  31. What is your favorite Season? Fall.
  32. What is your favorite dessert? Cheesecake.
  33. What book are you reading now? Harry Potter #7.
  34. If you have read Twilight: What's your vote, Jacob or Edward? Neither, I have an aversion to anyone who wants to suck my blood. Yuck!
  35. What is your favorite television show? None, I really don't love tv, but right now we are on Season 3 of 24.
  36. What is the farthest you've been from home? New York City, NY.
  37. Do you have a special talent? Lying. So now you can't believe anything I say.
  38. Where were you born? Silverton, OR
  39. What time do you wake up each morning? Lately I decided that I could set my mental clock instead of setting my alarm and it worked. I wake up at almost exactly the same time every morning, around 7:30 am.
  40. What is your least favorite thing to do? Cleaning up puke.
  41. What is your favorite hobby? (This answer is for adults only) It has 3 letters, it starts with an s and ends with an x.

Monday, March 10, 2008

I'm back!

A virus had invaded our computer and so my life on the computer was put on hold. I felt like I was missing a part of myself. Not really. But it was hard to find other ways to waste my time. Not really. I have a lot of catching up to do since I had Sister's weekend with photo's to post which I will have to do later.

Yesterday was Sunday and I had my 7:30 am Missionary Correlation meeting. That was hard because we had to Spring forward an hour so it really felt early. My DH held is traditional DST joke-a-thon. All day Saturday he would say the time but with an hour added to it. So last night when we went to bed I said it feels like 9:40 pm. You guessed it! It was really 10:40 pm. He was irritated I stole his joke. I felt a little disgusted that I said it but triumphant to have beat him to the punch.

I added a new quote to the top of my blog. I heard it on a car commercial and the funny part was they were serious when they said that line. "The more you know, the less you don't know." So that's what I have been missing by not watching tv, so much knowledge.

75% of my kids are sick. I am taking Cor to the doctor today to see if he has pink eye. Monday is usually cleaning day so I cleaned both bathrooms, the kitchen and I am working on a mountain of laundry. I even mopped the kitchen and both bathrooms. I usually clean a lot on Mondays but I do have company coming on Wednesday so I need a head start. I washed and dried laundry last week but never got it all put away. My DH tried to make fun of the pile of clothes in front of our closet until I pulled out some of his dirty clothes from the pile. Ha ha, he had nothing more to say!

Well it was another sweet weekend with my DH. Friday night we went on a date to do our taxes at H in your Block (that's what my niece calls H & R Block). After that we did a little shopping. "School S----" will return again today but it was worth it to have my wonderful DH all weekend. Well tonight will be the last Monday night class so I think he will be a lot less stressed this week. Then we can concentrate on counting down the days till Spring Break. We are going to have lots of fun, one-day outings and get some house work and yard work done.