Sep 30, 2016

Baby Doll's Friend Party

We had so much fun today at Baby Doll's friend party! She invited her entire primary class and her school class. Of the 25 or so kids, we ended up with 18. It was a little crazy, but fun.

We started the kids off making these cute farm animal puppets. That kept them pretty busy for a few minutes and then we sent them outside to play. Duck, Duck, Goose was a favorite except that the Dog Walker left the sprinkler on the garden and the kids kept slipping on the wet grass.

So we started a rousing game of Farmer in the Dell. I even played that one so many times it made me dizzy!

In the meantime, Drama Queen came in wearing her Old MacDonald's Wife costume and she began making balloon animals for the kids. Then it was time for gifts and ice cream and cupcakes that Princess helped Baby Doll make this morning. They were pink and they looked like little piggies.

Then to top off all the birthday celebrating, Princess took Scout and Baby Doll back to her house for a sleepover. I ran up to Curves to set up the Tupperware display for the next few days while Drama Queen took the boys went down to Bossy's house. Crafty had rehearsal, the Dog Walker was at work, and my sweetie was in Sanpete County painting his mom's house, so Drama Queen took me and Grandpa to Zupa's for dinner. It was a fun way to end a rather exhausting day.

Blast from the Past - Sugar Cookies 2004

One of our favorite holiday traditions is making sugar cookies. The biggest problem with that is that I love them! I think I could eat an entire batch by myself.

The Dog Walker found these fun pictures of himself and Princess. Now she is all grown up and married and he has gotten a bit bigger too.

Tomorrow she is coming over to help me make cupcakes and get ready for Baby Doll's birthday party. Baby Doll doesn't actually turn 6 until next Friday, but they went off track last week and we worried that if we had too much time between the invitation and the party that kids would forget. As it turns out, I think nearly everyone she invited is planning to come.

We are planning some cute pink piggy cupcakes. Bossy helped me make 24 gift bags and pieces to assemble for masks.

Remember when Scout turned 6? We did a farm animals party for her. Well, this one is supposed to be similar. Drama Queen is even planning to be "Old MacDonald" for me.

But the sugar cookies will have to wait for a few weeks for Halloween.

Or maybe I can just make a batch for myself...

Sep 29, 2016

Happy Birthday, Crafty

Our beautiful Crafty turned sweet 16 today!

It was sort of a different birthday for her. It was Parent/Teacher Conferences at the high school, so she got to sleep in for a while. Then at 11:00 we ran to the library so she could take her final for the fitness class she has been taking online. She got an A, of course.

Our first appointment with her dance teacher started at noon. Two hours later, I was relieved to know that all of her teachers think she is amazing, hardworking, and top of her class! Not that I would have thought differently, Crafty has always been an excellent student.

She had so many birthday wishes on Facebook and friends coming to the door that she hardly noticed we didn't have a big party for her here. Wednesdays are so hard; the family is planning a big celebration on Sunday. I did give her a cute new outfit to wear today and I offered to take her for ice cream, but she asked for a raincheck. I think she wants to spread her birthday over the entire week.

Tomorrow is her opening social for Cupcake Club so we spent the evening after dance making and baking cupcakes. I think she has about 100 although she is planning to have them each decorate and take home several. I hope she has at least a dozen people there. She is pretty nervous about being in charge and I am so excited for her to have that opportunity.

Happy birthday, Crafty!

Sep 28, 2016

Give Me a Break

Becoming a Bobcat
Tonight was pack meeting and I have been stressing about it all week because they invited me to do an Arrow of Light ceremony. Normally this is no big deal, but today we were outside, so that made sound and lights a bit tricky.

When it became apparent that I would be in charge of my own staging, I asked the Dog Walker if I could borrow his Karaoke machine. He brought it upstairs and we plugged it in and burned a CD with the music and all seemed to be fine.

Then tonight he loaded it into the car for me on his dinner break.

Kneel and be Knighted
Unfortunately, he wasn't the only thing that had a break. For some crazy reason, the mic would not work. I could get the music up and running, but all of our hard work to make it so everyone would be able to hear appeared to be lost.

My sweetie showed up just before the meeting started and he tried to help me, but after we opened up the mic, we could see that a couple of little wires were broken and there was no way it was going to work.

We did our best without it. Curly still received his Bobcat and did a great job in his skits. And the Arrow of Light worked out just fine. Way better than I thought it would... I just stepped aside and let my sweetie do it.

Sep 27, 2016

McGyver Skills

We got through the weekend and all the excitement, so today was definitely a Monday.

You have to hold your head just right...
I had a dentist appointment first thing and it was incredibly painful as he attempted to seal up this open-ended root to finish off my root canal. (And tonight I can't sleep because the pain is so bad...) When we were finished, I got back to the house just in time to meet Bossy so we could drop Salsa off at preschool with Scout and head for Utah County.

Remember I told you about Prima Donna's car accident on Friday night? Well, Bossy and Gamer managed to get the car down the canyon (barely!) and to a grocery store parking lot where it overheated on them. Today we decided we had to deal with it.

When we got there, Bossy immediately opened the hood, checked things out, and then crawled beneath the car. The radiator hose was broken, so I went into Harman's and bought some duct tape and a tube. Unfortunately, the tube was not even remotely what she was thinking, so I returned it to the store and bought a bottle of Gatorade.

With McGyver-like precision, we cut the bottom from the bottle and used it to bridge the hole in the hose. I say "we" loosely; Bossy did all the work and I ripped strips of duct tape for her. The first time the leaks were terrible and we had to start over, but before long she had the car on the road with its makeshift repair.

We made it as far as Pleasant Grove before it started to overheat, but that was far enough. We were within the 50-mile radius to get our tow free from State Farm under the rules of my insurance policy. I made the call and we headed for home. We were a few minutes late to pick up the kids, but a quick call before we left made that totally fine.

So proud of Bossy for her ingenuity! I'm thinking maybe she can go to work as a mechanic...
... or a rep for Gatorade.

Sep 25, 2016

Happy Birthday, Princess

Princess turned 20 yesterday and although we sang to her up at Trefoil Ranch and she was embarrassed to stand up in front of all the girls, we decided we still wanted to have a big party today.

My sweetie did all the cooking except for the cake (I'll tell you about that in a minute). Princess had requested eggplant parmesan and we also had chard, tomato salad, and alfredo. My favorite part was my sweetie's homemade Italian bread with roasted garlic, oil, and balsamic vinegar. I was pretty full before the meal even started!

I was in charge of the birthday cake because it was also a special reveal cake for Twiz and Teach. Princess is such a good sport, she was totally fine with letting them upstage her for a minute. I made the cake half pink and half blue and then marked the right side so Teach would know which one to cut.

The cake was still partially frozen when she cut into it and the pink piece sort of flew up in the air. The kids all cheered! They all knew they were hoping for a girl. Such exciting news!

Winds of change are blowing strong here...

Sep 24, 2016

Leader Daughter Retreat

On Friday, right after we finished up the Homecoming Parade, the girls and I packed up the van for the Leader Daughter Retreat at Trefoil Ranch up Provo Canyon. We were almost out of South Jordan when Bossy insisted we turn around and take her and Fajita back home. She just felt like she needed to stay with her family this time.

When we finally got back on the road and up the canyon, we were running much later than we wanted to be. We met Princess at Vivian Park and she climbed in with us. The only other one missing was Prima Donna and she was planning to drive up from Ogden when her rehearsal was over.

As soon as we got to the lodge, they had us eat dinner and then get settled in our own private cabin. We could have stayed in the big lodge, but we would have had to sleep on the floor with 75 other small girls running around. The cabin slept 8, so that was just perfect.

Since Prima Donna was going to be late, we made a plate for her and we got comfortable in the mess hall to wait. By 8:00 we were getting pretty nervous. It shouldn't have taken her that long. By 8:45 I was ready to send the older girls back down the mountain so we could at least have phone service.

Drama Queen and Teach were walking to the parking lot when the leader of our Girl Scout Community came to tell me that they had word that Prima Donna had been in an accident. She was fine, but the car was not.

I sprinted down to the parking lot, calling for the older girls. They were just getting in the van when they heard me. Teach stayed back and Drama Queen and I anxiously drove down the winding mountain road until we had phone service.

As it turned out, Prima Donna had turned a bit too early in the dark toward Vivian Park and high centered her car on two large rocks. It ripped the undercarriage off her car (and a few other things), but those rocks saved her from landing in the river.

Bossy and Gamer had already rescued her (along with an expensive tow truck) and they were on their way up the mountain when we all got together. I was so happy to see her! She joined us in our van and it wasn't long before we were all warm and safe in the lodge.

The rest of the evening was pretty uneventful and other than the fact that we didn't sleep, we all had a great time. The girls did crafts (sponsored by Princess), and we made little scrapbooks. After lunch we cleaned up and headed for home.

The mountains were so beautiful and the leaves were changing. We got so many amazing pictures, but I will just share a few of them with you. If you get a chance to get up in the mountains in the next week or so, I highly recommend it.

But be careful!

Sep 23, 2016

Homecoming Parade

I have been in many parades in my life, but never as the driver. Crafty is the President of the Cupcake Club at Bingham and if you remember last week we decorated a hall at the high school. So this afternoon before he went to work, the Dog Walker and I took down all the drops and stars from the hallway and carefully repurposed them for our "float."

I didn't want the packing tape on my car, so we carefully removed each piece and put on a magnetic strip instead. Drama Queen painted a few new signs for us and it made for a quick and easy float. The problem was the rain.

If you didn't know, we had a couple of tornadoes in Utah yesterday and the weather has been pretty dicey. It rained lightly all through the parade. Fortunately our float held together and none of the paint ran. Crafty and Fajita walked in front of the float and threw toostie rolls to all the people on the sides of the road.

Attendance was pretty light because of the weather, but we still had a great time! I think I'm even OK to do it again next year, but I'd prefer sunshine if possible.

Guest Blog: Happy Halloween! from Studio C by Dog Walker

Every time, I thought it's just been recently that I got to Guest blog for Mom, but she asked me to do it, since she has to go to bed and get some rest before another busy day. Anyway, this may look familiar from last Christmas, but I thought it would be great for all of you to see a little more of the clean humor from Studio C. This one shows them doing their sketches that are related to Halloween. Since Halloween is coming up, I thought you should have a fun time watching these videos that Studio C made for Halloween. I hope you have a good laugh and a Happy Halloween!


Sep 22, 2016

Baby Doll's School Birthday

Baby Doll is turning 6 on October 2nd, but my kids go off-track on Friday, so her teacher asked us if we wanted to celebrate her birthday in class before then. We settled on tomorrow. It is quite a chore. We made each child a treat bag full of tootsie rolls and jolly ranchers and attached an invitation to her birthday party next week. That took an hour.

But the thing that took us the longest was going through pictures on my computer so she could make a poster to share with her friends. She used every one of these pics. The only thing I did was print them out for her in various sizes. She carefully cut and glued each one and then she colored between them. (I think she cuts straighter than I do...) In fairness, I did offer to cut them on the paper cutter, but she declined.

Look how cute she is and how grown up! It's hard to believe she is only turning 6.

Sep 21, 2016

Lots of Decisions to Make

I am struggling with this week.

It's always hard when my sweetie is out of town, but with my tooth problems and this cold I've developed, I'm just running ragged. On Monday I took Baby Doll to Ogden after school. She has been cast as the Young Girl in the same play as Prima Donna.

The kids are double cast so they don't have to be there as often, but it is still a big commitment for her and for me. She had fun getting to know the other cast members and she felt pretty comfortable with them. So do I let her have this opportunity or deny it just to keep my own life from spiraling out of control?

Drama Queen has offered to help drive her (or take the train) that hour into Ogden a couple of times a week and then more in November as the play gets closer.

The South Pointe Ballet cast was also posted and Crafty is a soloist and she and Scout are both listed in other scenes. Their show isn't until January, but that will make the holidays a bit crazier.

This week is also Homecoming Week and Crafty has several things to do including making a float for the parade on Friday and coming up with a game for the Carnival on Thursday. I also just realized it is Parent/Teacher Conferences for the middle school. The next couple of days are going to be totally out of control already without lots of hard decisions to make.

Sep 19, 2016

Trying out Adoramapix

Last night at Grandpa's big birthday party, Princess showed me an adorable photo book she had made of her wedding, including the bridals, shower, etc. I am a huge fan of these kinds of books, so when I received the opportunity to tell you about a company I had never heard of before, I thought it would be a great idea for all of us to see the kind of work they can do.

The company is called Adoramapix and their products look very similar to that company that ships everything in the orange envelopes. They gave me these sample pics to show you and they look pretty good so I am hoping they can make me a book with some of my favorite blog memories.

Any suggestions on what I should put in it? I was thinking maybe Dog Walker's Autism story or maybe my own wedding pics. (The kids have already made books with their stories.) My other thought was from Teach's mission.

Adoramapix is making me a book for free with my honest review, but they are also offering a 15% discount for any of my readers who would also like to give them a try. Just use this code photobook15  That code is good until November 5, 2016, and here is the link to their website Adoramapix

I should definitely have my book by then. I can't wait to show it to you!

Grandpa's Birthday Party

We had a huge birthday party for Grandpa today. Drama Queen and I spent our time after church preparing food. She made the spaghetti and meatballs (Grandpa's favorite dish) and I made a chocolate cake with coconut pecan frosting.

By 5:30, the party started and we were all ready. Each family brought a salad to go along with our main dish. Drama Queen also made garlic bread and we had green beans. At the last minute I began to stress about food, so Crafty and I made a fruit bowl.

As it turned out, there were nearly 50 of us here, unfortunately we were missing my sweetie. He flew out this morning for a work trip. I'm pretty sure everyone had fun. We talked and laughed and visited until nearly 8:00. Grandpa seemed happy with his gifts and he spent several minutes going over everything he had been given as well as setting up a little display of things for us to look over.

Although I do think he had his moments of boredom, because this is the only pic we got of him and he was doing something with his tablet.

Then it was cleanup and get the kids ready to deal with tomorrow. My little ones go off track the end of this week and I'm definitely looking forward to that. We have two birthdays next week and then Baby Doll will turn 6 a week later. It really is a constant party at my house, and I have a suspicion that it is going to get much worse before it gets any better.