Tuesday, January 27, 2009

just one word

I've thought and thought about this for weeks now. I've been trying to decide what my word for 2009 will be. The word that encompasses my goal for the new year. The word that helps me to focus on the places in my life where I would like to make some  progress.

In 2008 my word was remember. Looking back it was a good word for my first year of blogging. I tried to keep up with this blog as a record of our family to help us to remember. I tried to record some of my memories that may have not been previously recorded. I did well, and I will continue with this as it has become habit for me now.

After much consideration I've settled on my new word for 2009-


I've tried it on for size for a little while and it seems to fit well. When I think of perspective the first thing that comes to mind is eternal perspective. I feel that as I focus on eternal things and put more priority on my own spiritual growth (personal prayers, scripture study, etc...) that the other things will fall into place much more easily... parenting, church callings, weight control, household chores, general simplifying...

I will apply perspective to my parenting.  This has already come in handy during some frustrating parenting moments. It helps me to be a little more patient. Helps me to think on a grand scale of the eternities and what is most important.... choosing my battles.  Sometimes I need to be less strict and sometimes I need to be more strict.  I will spend less time barking orders and dispensing punishments and more time listening, understanding, setting expectations, and looking for the positive.  

It's hard for me to find the right words to explain all of the ways perspective  can make a difference in my life, but I know what I mean. :) Looking at the big picture, the eternal perspective, seeing situations in a new way than I have looked at them before... This is what a strive for this year as I focus on just one word: perspective.

Monday, January 26, 2009


Our friends Nick and Angie B. invited our family to join theirs for dinner at a new restaurant in town and I am SO glad they did. We went to a Japanese restaurant called Fuji Grill. Oh my YUM! and oh my FUN! This was a new experience for our family.

It's always fun to hang out with Nick, Angie, and Olivia. We decided that it was Olivia and Jackson's first date. ;) Olivia likes to say that she's going to marry Jackson and they hug and kiss each other every time they are together. It's really too cute. :) Unfortunately I did not have my camera with me, so I had to use my phone camera to get some pretty worthless, bad, fuzzy pictures. Angie was smart enough to have hers. I should try to get some from her.

(Jackson is the blur next to fuzzy Olivia.)

Our family ordered Hibachi meals: chicken (Reag, Jackson & I), steak, (Greg & Kobe) and filet mignon (Jillie) with grilled veggies, fried rice, miso soup, and salad. It was so fun to have our food cooked right there in front of us. (Although now that I know how much oil, butter, and eggs they use, I should probably never eat it again.) It was especially funny to watch Nick, Greg, and Kobe trying to catch pieces of food in their mouths that our chef tossed at them. :) Jackson found the whole thing a little frightening, especially every time there was a burst of flames on the grill. The rest of us enjoyed the show and the food.

We found it such a neat experience it will definitely be a place to go again with friends and family! Thanks for the great night guys!

Friday, January 23, 2009

"Hollywood Day"

"Hollywood Day" at school today.

Here are Reagan's and Kobe's interpretation:

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A new look

This morning this got a new look... Read all about it here.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

History Unfolds

Today I sat at the TV
snapping pictures as if I was actually there. :)
Another inauguration. This one is more historically significant that most. Our country has it's first Black president! The peaceful transfer of power is one we may take for granted here in the USA. I found myself feeling quite patriotic and excited today while the ceremony took place. While I may not be too excited about President Barack Obama's political views, I am hopeful that he will be successful, that WE will be successful. I do not wish him to fail. After seeing the excitement and hope and positive attitudes of Americans today, I think changes will happen- and not necessarily because of Obama's actions as president- but because of the belief of the people that everything's going to be just fine now. We may restart the economy all on our own with all this happiness going on. :)

A positive attitude is going to go along way for our country. I have been so frustrated with the negative talk about President Bush. I am proud to have had him as our president. For heaven's sake, 9/11 happened less than a 9 months into his presidency! Unless your name is Rosie O'Donnell, you don't blame him for that. I remember how patriotic our country felt then. I remember how much we stood behind President Bush and supported him. Then when things got messy, as war does, people turned their backs on him. I really don't get into politics, but I don't know many who would know exactly what to do with this new threat of terrorism. Hind sight is 20/20. There may have been some things he would've done differently looking back now. I honestly believe he did what he felt was best for the country... and he has kept us safe all these years. I appreciate his service. Who would ask for this difficult of a job? Not me. That is why I can support President Obama now too. The hardest job in the entire world. All I can do is be proud to live in a democracy and pray that all of our leaders make the right choices. I'll miss the Bush's- and hope that history will redeem him.
I stole a fabulous idea today from 2Cleverblog.com. The girls over there designed the most 'clever' cards to mark the inauguration. I printed up some for our family- and you can print them up for yours too! One is a thank you note to the Bush's and the other is a "welcome to your new home" note for the Obama's. These have been very helpful with the kids. They are pretty sour on Obama due to our support of McCain and the competitive nature of the election. This has given me a chance to talk with them about how we should support him as he is OUR president. Even if we don't agree with his political views, we can still pray for him to make wise choices, and tell him so in our notes. I think the experience has softened them a little. :) Our letters will be in the mail soon.

High points today:
**Aretha Franklin singing "My Country 'tis of Thee", Yo-Yo Ma, Itzhak Perlman,... all of the music was great.

**Michelle Obama's yellow dress and her ability to walk most of the parade route in freezing temps AND high heels.
**Seeing all of the former presidents hanging out in the hall chatting it up while the staff nervously paced, not sure how to get them to move along to their seats.
**The little Obama girls just so visibly excited for their dad.
** President Bush saying goodbye to the Obama's. (I did a little lip reading.) President Obama to President Bush, "Thanks a lot, man." President Bush to Michelle Obama, "You're gonna have the time of your life. I promise!"

Low points:
**Feeling bad for President Bush when it felt like all of the speakers were bagging on him for the way he lead the country while he sat right there.
** Since when do people think it's ok to cheer and whoop and holler DURING A PRAYER?? I'm not talking about an Amen shout, but when the first prayer was said, and he mentioned "the first black president", the audience went crazy with cheers. Can it wait just a sec?!
** Since when is it ok to start rhyming like Dr Suess and making everyone laugh DURING A PRAYER?? Reverence anyone?!

I guess it's a cultural thing... Mormon culture vs. the rest I guess.

Overall, a good day for America.
Waiting to see what changes are in store...

Cello at the Festival

{A little backtracking,
but it must be posted to officially a part of this record.}

Reagan attended the Erie County Music Festival a couple of weeks ago. This was her first experience at such an event. We arrived at a huge high school/middle school complex and were directed to the gym to warm her up on her cello. The gym was full of kids of all ages with all sorts of instruments. Parents stood in as music stands has they held music in front of their kids faces. Cello players were the lucky ones, they got to use the chairs.
I had to take a pictures of these boys practicing. The kid in red cracked me up the way he was trying to balance his huge instrument on it's case. He looked so uncomfortable.

Anyhow, Reagan got in a little practice, and then we headed down the hall. She went into a room with a judge who listened to her play a few things and then returned to the gym. We waited.... and waited...and waited...

She didn't have much hope for her score. She guessed she'd be lucky to get a 70 (out of 100). Eventually her score was posted...

She was pretty surprised (and I, very proud) when she saw her 98!! Good work Reagan! Keep it up!

Monday, January 19, 2009

I Have a Dream

... to have the day off of school, a friend over, and lots of snow to play in!
Kobe & his friend Jacob

Jillie and her friend Madison

Reagan and her friend Tori

We raided the stash of empty syrup bottles that we keep for just such an occasion,
and got creative.
{Someone wants a puppy so bad he tried to make it look like we had one...}I just love how a heavy snow fall looks...
And someone preferred to just stay in...

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Priesthood Blessings

Last weekend Kobe was in a lot of pain. He kept holding his jaw and saying that his tooth hurt. On Saturday I called the dentist and they set him an appointment for Tuesday with the pediatric dentist. We started the Motrin. During the night his toothache would wake him up. By Sunday he was taking Motrin around the clock, asking for it again after only 4 hours even though it's supposed to last for 6-8 hours, and he was holding his face where it was swollen. That night again he woke in pain. I gave him Motrin. Greg gave him a priesthood blessing. Kobe slept.

Priesthood Blessing
A blessing given by a Melchizedek Priesthood holder, by the laying on of hands and by inspiration, to one who is sick or otherwise in need of special counsel, comfort, or healing.

-definition from lds.org

Monday morning I called the dentist office. I said we couldn't wait another day and could he please be seen today. They squeezed us in with a regular dentist. On the way over, I realized that I hadn't given any Motrin to Kobe. I commented to him that he seemed to be feeling much better today. He told me it didn't hurt anymore. I could see that his face was still swollen though. Then he simply said, "It stopped hurting when Daddy was giving me the blessing."
At the dentist office they took x-rays and gave us the bad news. He needed a "baby tooth root canal"!!! (Are you kidding me?!) She said the tooth needs to be saved since it won't fall out on it's own for a few years still. We left with a prescription for an antibiotic and an appointment for Thursday's root canal with the pediatric dentist.
Today is Thursday. Kobe was nervous and asked for another priesthood blessing. Included in this blessing there was a promise made that the dentist would make good decisions and do what was best for Kobe. This morning at the dentist office, a new x-ray was taken.

blurry pictures courtesy of my cell phone

'Dr. Mary', the pediatric dentist, took a good look in Kobe's mouth and at the x-ray. She said she really believed there was nothing wrong with the tooth at all. She decided that something had wedged it's way below his gums and caused an infection. She numbed the area with a gel, cleaned under the gums for a second, and sent him on his way.

We are very happy and feel very blessed.

When you wish upon a star.

When I picked up Jackson from preschool today, there were stars all over the classroom door.  Each child's star had  a note by it saying what that child was wishing for. Here's Jackson's (taken with camera phone)
Jackson wishes to hug Kobe.

You can only imagine how happy he was that Kobe (who is normally at his own school at this time of day) was with me when we came to pick him up from preschool! ;)

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Today is another very snowy day. I've decided that I live in the right place since I really enjoy the snow.
(Granted my life is such that I typically don't have to get out in it if I choose not to... and I do get to a point where I have had enough.) :)A fresh covering of snow looks like a warm blanket making every house and tree look comfy and cozy... ironic I suppose. I love to sit inside a warm house watching the blizzard out of the window or to be out in the cold air shoveling or playing with the kids.
Unfortunately, Greg doesn't feel the same way about living here. He'd much rather live in LA. (um, not happening.)
So today after Jackson was done with preschool we did a few things inside like watch the snow plow go by.

We made a little surprise for the rest of the family. (Here's Jack Jack waiting for a picture of Disney World to come out of the printer.)
I'd gone to Home Depot and picked up one of each of their paint chips that are Mickey shaped. We used them to make a little countdown calendar on the wall to countdown the days til we go to Disney World!
I grabbed some little blue Mickey Mouse feet from a Disney game we have. The feet will walk up the path one day at a time.
Then we got a little Valentines-y...
Nothing too fancy. We got some heart garland and hearts and just threw them around a little.
Even changed the Christmas Poinsettia into a Valentine's Poinsettia. {Can you do that?}

We also replaced the Christmas books with the Valentines and snow themed books...
... and did a little reading.
I also updated The Garrick Gallery today with a couple of posts from fall and winter that I neglected to post earlier. By the way, it's very funny to me that I get a lot of foreign traffic on that blog. I think they must be searching for some real Garrick Gallery that must be out there in Europe somewhere. Suprise to them to find my kids' artwork intead of something famous! :)
**Don't forget!! Tonight it's time for a new season of American Idol!!!!! WooHoo!!**

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Sound Asleep

Mr. low-muscle-tone (JackJack) sleeps like this all night. Crazy!