Thursday, October 29, 2015

Happy Birthday, Katie!

I can't believe it's been 2 years now since my little girl was born. Since then, she has been changing my life.

It seems that every child I have comes out more stubborn and difficult than the previous. Katie is no exception. She is the first of my children to really have tantrums - shrieking, screaming, flailing fits that last for way too long. It is often from miscommunication or her not getting her way. Sometimes she shrieks for fun, even when she isn't mad. I don't know what to do with myself when these happen except to put her in her crib until she calms down. But enough on the negatives.

Katie is learning to put more and more sentences together. She is a very girly girl and loves clothes, shoes, unicorns, owls, fluffy things, sparkles, princesses, dresses, and bright colors. She is like little mother to her plastic baby dolls and is constantly singing to them, wrapping them in blankets, and putting them to bed. Don't think I'm a sexist. 80% of the toys in the house are "boy" toys, but she chooses her baby dolls every time. I only occasionally see her building things with Legoes or playing with cars. They don't seem to interest her much. Even when she plays outside, she buckles her little plastic baby in the stroller and takes it for walks. So cute. Her main birthday presents are things to take care of her babies: a stroller, high chair, crib, and car seat. I know she will love them.

I'm learning to tame her wispy, golden curls. I'm not good with hair care or 'dos, but I'm slowly learning. I love seeing her grow up, but it makes me sad too, just like with the boys. It really goes by too fast!

Katie is a Daddy's girl. As soon as she sees his car pull up, she is the first to toddle up and demand a hug. That is one of my favorite things to see each day. She loves being the center of attention and milks it for all its worth when she figures out something funny. She repeats it over and over until we stop laughing.

As with each of my children, I can't imagine life without her. Happy 2nd birthday, ladybug!

(Well, I wrote that the day before her birthday last week but forgot to publish it. Oops.) On to this week...

Katie did have a great birthday. Her favorite new toy is the shopping cart, which she uses as a stroller for her babies. She starts playing with it first thing when she wakes up.

I've had a tough October in terms of my mood. I am a big believer in good nutrition and exercise as a form of medicine, and they really do help! As I was counseling with James on Sunday, he helped me realized that babysitting 10 hours a week was starting to take its toll on me. I didn't want to admit it at first, but after babysitting yesterday, I see that he was completely right. After this round of babysitting, I am done! That means only another 5 times by November 11th. I feel like I'm giving up on helping out a friend, but I have started seeing the negative effects of the extra stress in my life. 4:00 and on is usually the time I relax a little and wind down. My productive hours are more from 7 a.m. until then. Usually I am mentally spent by the time the extras come over and run out of patience a lot more quickly. I enjoyed it but dreaded it at the same time. I hope she is able to work things out okay. I'm just not cut out for 6 kids under the age of 6.

I've been prepping the yard (pulling out the last of the dead plants) for a big bonfire! Hopefully we can do that soon. We meant to do it last weekend but didn't get around to it. Anna came for Katie's birthday! We watched a movie, had treats, and went the Jensen Pumpkin Festival on Saturday. It was a lot of fun. It really feels like fall now, for better or for worse. I wish my kids could play outside more, but they're still taking advantage of it when they can.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015


As I have said before, this time of year is bittersweet to me. I'm relieved that the end of harvesting and canning is almost over, but I'm also sad that all the plants are dead or dying. I only have tomatoes and pumpkins left. I harvested the corn and made it into cornmeal after drying it. The corn was supposed to be sweet, but I waited too long to try to eat it, so it was starchy instead. Still, it isn't going to waste since it can now make cornbread! My freezer is so crammed full of produce that I took an inventory to make sure nothing goes to waste.

I babysat a lot last week and have it today too. Tomorrow we leave for Salt Lake for fall break. I'm not ready to travel again so soon, but I will pull through. I feel like I just recovered from the last trip we took. It will certainly be nice to be able to take a real cooler. I'm also excited that we will be cooking our own meals in the hotel. :)

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Conference Weekend

I didn't write last week but can't remember what happened either. I do know that the internet was down AGAIN. I have called them 12 times in the last 5 weeks. It's one of those cases where living in a small town is not a good thing, because there is only one choice for internet service. Oh well.

We went to Idaho for Conference. The trip was kind of last minute since we're already going out of town for fall break next week too, but that's only to Salt Lake. We took the other Wyoming way to Idaho. It was scenic, but boring, and the kids thought so too. There just aren't a lot of landmarks to make the trip seem faster. Conference was great! We spent Saturday relaxing with my brothers and Sunday in Driggs/Victor with the grandparents and cousins. I enjoyed the messages given.

I had my first parent-teacher conference where I was the parent. Joseph loves school and is doing well. I'm happy he likes it so much.

This week has been crazy. Since we got back Monday, I've had to do a lot of catching up. The garden needs to be harvested too. I've done the potatoes, turnips, 1/2 of the carrots, squash, peppers, beans, and peas. That leaves the onions, corn, tomatoes, 1/2 of the carrots, and pumpkins. I can't believe how much food can be grown in such a small space and with such little time and effort. I've been keeping track of the pounds of food so I can calculate how profitable the garden is. ('Cause I'm a nerd like that.)

I've had babysitting twice so far, again today, and then again on Saturday. I registered our new car! a Toyota Highlander. It fits 7 people and is a definite upgrade. I'm trying to figure out all the workings, but I'm getting there. It's weird that the DMV in Utah is so pleasant. I've never had a bad experience there or had to wait in line.

Thankfully, things are starting to slow down a little. I've been starting to feel the effects of S.A.D., so I've been working to remedy that by being outside in the sunshine and taking large amounts of vitamin D. Hopefully I can stay afloat for the next few months. :)