Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Goodbye First Grade

Just some fun pictures of the end of first grade for Nathan.

Clara moved in during the school year and Nathan instantly befriend her (which makes me proud). He said he told her "don't worry that no one else in this school is named Clara. I have a book about Clara the Cow" and their friendship blossomed. :)

Nathan sat by Carissa for a big part of the year. Until Ms. B had to separate them because Nathan just could not keep himself from the temptation of making Carissa laugh.

Ms. B. The greatest teacher ever. We love her.
And our friend Nana came to be the cookie fairy for the class the day before school got out:
Nathan does have friends who are boys too. I just didn't get pictures of them. His best friends in school are Bradley and Damien-our two neighbors.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

A Pie Worth Writing About

For Nathan's birthday he wanted a pie. A pumpkin pie he said. "Really?" I asked. "You want a pumpkin pie for your birthday?" (He doesn't even really love pumpkin pie I don't think.)

I offered chocolate pie, chocolate peanut butter or chocolate mint and he decided on the chocolate peanut butter pie option.

In an effort to simplify and not have to run to the store, I decided to create my own recipe for pie with things I had around the house (mind you I keep a lot of baking ingredients around the house.)

So here it is my friends. My own creation. My own recipe. And definitely the best peanut butter chocolate pie I have ever eaten. And so simple. Don't try this if you are allergic to peanuts. :)

Make one box of chocolate instant pudding (the bigger box, not the small kind.) Let it set up for 5 minutes.

Take a large dollop of peanut butter-maybe about 1/2 cup-and mix it in thoroughly.

Spoon part of that mixture into the bottom of an Oreo pie crust (the kind you buy premade at the store).

Next, crush some Reese's pieces and sprinkle them on top of that layer.

Then, mix some cool whip-a cup or two-in with the peanut butter pudding. Spread a layer of this on top of your last layer.

Next, add a layer of just plain cool whip. Then top with more crushed Reese's.

Like I said, so easy but so good. I just had to share.

Monday, June 21, 2010

It's always fun

when Grandpa comes-especially when he brings grandma and Uncle Scott along with him. In September and October last year all three of them visited us-but they each came separately. It was really fun to have them all here together this time (this time being weeks ago-like the end of May but I am just now getting around to blogging about it).

We really had a great time with them. It was a good balance of going and doing and sitting and relaxing. We took a driving tour of San Diego (me being the driver) that my dad learned about through the Chamber of Commerce. I love to drive and see things, and so does my dad, so the two of us were in heaven. Not so sure about the rest of the gang.

We also went to the beach, of course. Coronado. The prettiest of the San Diego beaches. Also the coldest and yes, it was COLD! (The water I mean although the day was only in the 60s.) But when you come to San Diego to boogie board, you have to boogie board, so boogie board they did.

We went to Point Loma-a little finger of land that sticks out into the ocean. My parents and Josh and I did the temple one evening which was a really nice evening while Uncle Scott babysat the kids. And we just played, ate and had fun.

Oh, and Scott gained a new nickname coined by Dallen who had a hard time strining uncle with scott. Unsle Cott.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Birthday Boys

It is the afternoon of Father's Day and in just a few short hours, the whirlwind of June celebrations will be over. We start the month with Nathan's birthday on June 2, then Jack's two days later, Josh's less than two weeks after that and then end with Father's day, this year just three days after that. Phew!

So I never wrote about Jack and Nathan's birthdays other than to say that we went to Legoland. The truth is that I have to write about them because I have pictures of my hard work on the treats I made-I have to share them with someone!

We started out by celebrating their birthdays with a BBQ on Memorial day while my family was in town visiting. We had cousin Laura and Sam over and the missionaries too (thanks to Josh and his kind heart that invited them over without checking with me to see what our plans were for that day). It was quite a party.

On Nathan's birthday he got up early and went to breakfast with Dad and then came home to the house decorated by me and Jack and he opened his Legoland pass. Then Josh dropped him off at school with these:

Cakepops. Probably the world's yummiest treat. Little did I know the reaction they would get. When I went to his school to have lunch with him that day the secretary in the office had heard about them and commented about it. Then the teacher raved and even the principal was excited by them. I guess I am now famous for cakepops.

(Reality: I was cursing myself the night before for not being the kind of mom who could just go to store and buy a pack of cookies or something simple, but instead chose to spend my time making these multi-step concoctions.)

Anyway, that night we opened presents, I made him a pie (and honestly, that warrants a whole post of its own. It was good-really good.) And then we just played Wii bowling and had fun together as a family.

Jack's preschool had a picnic the day before his birthday, so we took cupcakes. He wanted "toadcakes" (he is obsessed with Mario and wanted them to look like Toad.) I was a little unsure of how I was going to create these, but they turned out great. He was thrilled and that's what counts.

Friday, on the day of Jack's birthday, we surprised the boys and went to Legoland, but I already wrote about that. For his treat that night he chose mint ice cream and Reese's pieces. Interesting combination.

Really, I think there were several other celebrations thrown in there, but I honestly can't remember. It is always an exhausting week, but fun.

Now, things to remember about each of these little sweeties on their birthdays this year:

Nathan-Age 7:
Wants nothing more than to do good. He has a heart of gold. He aims to please-his parents, his teachers, and Heavenly Father and I love that about him.

He reads and reads and reads these days. There is nothing he likes better. He also loves to draw and write. He writes really well and his teacher even made copies of a story he wrote and gave it to the other teachers to see because she was so impressed.

He can entertains himself for hours if allowed to. Playing, reading, writing, drawing, anything.

Which brings up another thing about him-he hates to be rushed or told what to do, especially if it is hurried. He gets involved in something and absolutely hates it when I make his stop.

He loves to learn. He is smart, and he knows it. (We may have to work on humility as he gets older.)

I love his freckles, his toothless grin and his giggles. He loves to laugh and we love it when he does.

He is good at making friends. He has a lot of friends at school-he is friendly to everyone and is not afraid to be friends with anyone-even the girls who might have cooties. :)

Jack-Age 5

The first thing anyone would say about Jack is that he is strong willed and that is still so true. And I am sure it always will be. I was just saying to Josh that no one can make Jack do something-he has to decide on his own to do it. The other day he picked up an early reader book we have and read it to me straight through. I had no idea he could do that. I grabbed another and tried to get him to read it. Nope. Not interested. He will do it on his own time and in his own way, but when he does it, he will do it well. His handwriting is good for a 5 year old boy and that is of his own doing. I suspect he is capable of reading more than he lets on to-of his own doing.

He is also the most tender of souls-though most people don't get to see that side of my sweet Jack. He absolutely cannot resist snuggling. Even in his maddest moods if I offer a back scratch he is putty in my hands.

He feels things strongly and the way to connect to him is through love. He has a soft spot for love and tenderness. Loves baby things like turtles or any other baby animal. In general he loves animals (poor kid has two parents who don't.)

He is very obedient. He is almost always the first one ready for bed or done with his chores. When we ask him to do something, he does it. (Which I guess sort of contradicts what I wrote first about him doing things on his own time. Let's just say the Wii is powerful motivation for Jack to get his chores done.)

These are two special boys who I love and adore and treasure each and every day with them.

Friday, June 11, 2010


Last week was birthday week in our family-Nathan's birthday Wednesday and Jack's Friday. Celebrations began Monday and lasted through the week. (More on that to come.)

We are sort of sick of Stuff in our house. So, in order to limit the amount of stuff the boys got for their birthdays we decided to try something fun.

The morning of Nathan's birthday, he got to open a present that contained this:
This was to tell him he was getting a season pass to Legoland. It was funny to watch Jack's reaction. He got sad and sulky that Nathan got a pass. Seems like he would have immediately realized that two days later, on his birthday, he would get the same thing. He did catch on pretty quickly.

On Jack's birthday when he opened presents he found Lego letters spelling LegoLand TODAY! Meaning we were going that day. Josh took half a day off work and we headed to LEGOLAND in the afternoon! (Only about 20 minutes or so from our house.)

We are thrilled with Legoland-so uncrowded, so much lower key and less stressful than Disney and so perfect for our boys.

Here are some pictures from our first day in Legoland:

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Summertime is here

Yesterday was the last day of school-and a half day at that-so we had to celebrate! Popsicles in the backyard were a must. And what says summer better than some cool shades?
(I love this picture because it looks like Dal is yelling "ya!")

I gave the boys a present for the kickoff of summer. It was a bag of summer fun gear-bubbles, chalk, sunglasses, water balloons, glow sticks and coupons books made by mom that include things like getting a treat from the ice cream man or walking to 7-11 for a Slurpee! They get to use one coupon a week all summer.

I am so happy for summer break. Today they all slept past 8. Then we spent the morning at the park and now the boys are either napping or reading quietly. I love the low key lifestyle that summer allows-no homework, no rushing out the door in the morning.

Don't get me wrong though=we will be out and about plenty-beach, parks, zoo, swimming lessons, etc. But on our own time table, not a school calendar.

Hello summer!

Reality: Behind the Blog Facade-While I am thrilled summer is here and mean every word of this post, my house is thrashed! Summer also means messes everywhere!