Monday, July 18, 2011

The biggest little family in Reno

A while back we found out that Dave's sister, Debbie, and his brother, Don, would be in Reno at the same time this summer. We made plans for Dave to fly to Reno to be there as well, but last week, a few days before he was planning on leaving, we decided we'd just all drive up so the whole family could go. Here was our weekend:

Thursday - leave Vegas at 3; stop for dinner at 6, then back on the road and make it to Dave's parent's house by 10:30. Hug everyone, get the boys in pjs and the floor ready for them to go to sleep. Everyone asleep by 11:30

Friday - Up and getting ready by 7. Visit with Dave's sister, Debbie and her 3 girls. Help make breakfast. Dave's sister, Christy and her son Zach arrive and the baby sister Stephanie comes. More hugs. We start eating because the rest of the family is late. Dave's brothers and their families finally get there. More hugging. More eating. The dad's take the kids outside to play. The girls stay and make sandwiches for lunch. We head to the marina to play at the park, swim, play in the sand and eat lunch. Cody gets rescued by the lifeguard. Home to get ready for family pictures and get on the t-shirts Dave's dad had made for everyone. Off to take family pictures. After pictures we discover Carrie's car got broken into and her purse is stolen :( Back to Dave's mom's house. We hang out and talk, the kids play. BBQ for dinner, talent show, brownies and homemade ice cream.

Saturday - Debbie leaves at 7 that morning to fly home with her girls. Breakfast. Take kids to park to play. Meet everyone at Dave's mom's house. Eat leftovers for lunch. Make plans for the day. Go to car show. Kids play in water and get soaked (and Colin was wearing pants). Go watch dirt bike races. Go to Stephanie's house. Make more plans. Go to Andy's house for BBQ. Kids watch movie and play, grown-ups outside talking. Make dinner. Eat. Talk, eat some more. Go home. Go to sleep.

Sunday - up by 7. Eat breakfast, pack. Leave Reno around 9, stop for lunch around 12:30, get home around 5.

It was a great family reunion. So good to see family we have not seen for 5 years. The kids were able to meet cousins they have never met before. We decided it won't be another 5 years before we get together again.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


A while back, I got a letter from the school nurse. It said that Colin had a hearing test at school, did not pass it and I needed to take him in to see the school district audiologist. I took him in twice to get tested. He thought it was super fun and loved going. It was recommended that I take him to an Ear, Nose, Throat doctor for further and more advanced testing. At first I didn't think it was a big deal. He could hear fine. The audiologist told me he could have trouble hearing the "s" at the end of words or the "th" sound or whispers. But still I wasn't too concerned. Then we went to the movies last week to see Cars 2 and throughout the movie Colin had his fingers in his ears claiming it was too loud and hurt his ears. So I called an ENT doctor and got him in. He went in today and they did similar tests the audiologist did, the results were a little different. The doctor wants a different test done next week and then it's back to see him a week after that to see how the results were. All these tests. But, as we left the doctor today, Colin licking his Watermelon Tootsie Pop (I didn't even know they made those in watermelon) he said, "That was fun! Can we come back?" I'm glad he liked it.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Home sweet home

Trevor said the prayer last night before bed. He said, "Please bless our house to be like the temple." That is what his lesson was at church. When he said that I smiled because I had a lesson on that the week before and I remember during that lesson thinking about this house and comparing it with where we've lived before and knowing that there is a different spirit in this house. It has nothing to do with the house itself, but more with what we've omitted from our house. We've done things a little differently here which, I feel, has allowed us to have more peace and love in this home. Over the last three weeks that we have lived here I have seen my kids play together more and get along better. They spend more time quietly playing in the playroom or their bedroom, they spend more time reading or drawing. I even catch Trevor sitting on his bed flipping through his scriptures more often than he used to. Dave and I even use our time better and I've been more patient with my kids, more calm with them. And the only thing that has changed, the only thing we have done differently is that we no longer have the distraction of the television. Dave and I decided when we moved to no long have cable. We wanted to save money but we also wanted the kids to watch less television. I will admit using it as a babysitter, as a way to keep my kids busy so I could get things done. But I have since realized what a distraction it used to be and how little control I really had over what my kids saw when they watched TV. My kids still watch cartoons or movies through Netflix on the Wii but now they watch one show a day instead of 20 and they only get to see the things Dave and I have picked for them. And I think one of the biggest blessings is that they no longer see commercials. I feel like we disconnected from the world a little bit and I love what that has done for our family. I don't want to raise my kids in a bubble where they never get to see or know what's going on around them. I don't want to deprive them of things or protect them so much that when they leave our home they have no idea what to do because they haven't been exposed to things. But what I do want for them is to know that their home is different. That when they are out in the world and they get overwhelmed or hurt, angry, frustrated or a little beat up, they can walk through that front door and feel that something here is different. I want them to think of our home as a safe haven, a place where they are loved and protected, a place where they can escape from the worldly things. I want them to want to be home. It really is amazing to me that one little thing like the television can change the feeling and the atmosphere in our home so much. And that being a little more disconnected is bringing our family a little bit closer together.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Water babies

When Dave and I first considered this house to buy one of the things we worried about the most was the pool. We were nervous about living in a house with a pool especially since our kids did not know how to swim. They've had swim lessons, but they've not had a lot of time swimming and were not too comfortable in the water. But, the more we talked about it, the more we thought maybe a pool could be a good idea.
We brought the kids swimming before we moved in. That was about three weeks ago. That first day swimming Trevor wouldn't put his face in the water because he was still a little scared and he didn't like getting his ears wet. Logan just played on the top step of the pool and had no interest going any further into the water. Colin was more adventurous, but still nervous about going too deep and drowning.
Since we moved in, the kids have gone swimming almost every day. And every day they've gotten more and more comfortable. Yesterday I took a video of them swimming for the first time. I mean really swimming. They are learning so fast and they were so excited with their new skills. I think they'll just get better and better and before we know it we'll have three little fish.