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Sunday, April 27, 2014


This was a more laid back week.  On Monday all the kids but Allison got to go to the dentist.  We learned that Taylor is getting his 12 year old molars which explains all the extra drool and him chewing off his fingernails.  And we learned that we don't have to worry about removing his wisdom teeth till he is 20.  Spencer got some cavities filled.  And Robyn struck the jack-pot.  Our little worry-wort had two teeth pulled and got her new retainer.  She was worried about how much it would hurt, how she would talk funny and look weird.  So she has been practicing saying tongue twisters and is now a pro at retainer talk.  She was not prepared for how sore her mouth would be for a day or two.  Lot of tears and drama as she tried to eat.  Tuesday I got a call at 12:30 of her sobbing that her mouth hurt so bad and she hadn't been able to eat of any lunch.  Mean mom that I was I made her stay at school for the remaining two hours and she toughed it out.  Luckily the drama has died down.

Taylor had his follow-up appointment this week with neurology.  I learned a valuable lesson.  Always have a back-up outfit for Taylor on me.  I looked over right before the doctor came when I heard a dripping sound.  He managed to pee through his pants, stroller and all over the floor.  Don't ask me how.  And of course his extra outfit was at home on his wheelchair and I had brought his stroller.  Lesson learned.  And Primary's has really, really nice nurses.  But he is all healed up and doing well.  The bad mom part of this story is that on the way home I had planned to stop at the outlets to return something.  So...Taylor got to wear those peed on pants for a few minutes so I could run in.  Someday I expect a stern talking to from him about the things I have made him do.  He has learned to laugh at Robyn's tantrums (she was on cleaning bathrooms this week and it was a long and very vocal process).   He is walking/running at school so he can cross the school to the water bed and lay on it every day.  He is working on tapping once for yes and twice for no.  The speech pathologist says he can do this really well.  I am a little doubtful but we are working on it.  Having him tap one hand for yes and one hand for no just wasn't working very well.

This week was my last long run before the marathon - 20 miles.  And now I get to taper - yippee.  And I have the best friends as the met me and coordinated rides so I could have someone with me for the first five miles and the last five miles.  I don't know if running is an accurate description of what I am doing but I am completing the distance and not killing myself in the process so I am feeling good about it.

This week I got to meet some friends to celebrate a friend's birthday.  I got to make cheesecake and sit and visit for a few hours.  I forget what a wonderful thing girl events are and what amazing people I am surrounded by.  Each are so different but are inspiring and keep me laughing each in their own way.

Allison is a little bit at a loss this week as play practices are over.  They had their end of year cast party and she won an award for dancing.  She has forgotten what it is like to have free time.  She went to the pet store this week to get a new cage for her rabbit.  Since its so big the cage is now back in her room as Oakley throws litter everywhere with abandon.

Kayla my niece got to spend the weekend with us.  Allison took her and Robyn to the movies, Robyn and Kayla stayed up late and got up early to play, Robyn and Kayla cleaned out a disgustingly dirty play house and we all got to go see Brynn's (another niece's) play. 

This week I spent my down time watching old movies and counting tickets from Lincoln's health week.  I underestimated how many tickets kids could earn running laps and how long it would take to count them.  But it was great to just hang out a bit and relax.  On Saturday night Jeremy and I kept enjoying our new respite worker and were able to go out to dinner and a play.  Arsenic and Old Lace was my favorite Halloween spooky movie so it was fun to see in a play form.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

The Play is the Thing...

This was the week of Suessical.  Allison (and Jeremy doing photos) had a long dress rehearsal Monday afternoon and evening and then Allison had 7 performances in 5 days.  She lived and slept Suessical, going out to eat and hang out with cast members after the matinees (while her hard working joy kill of a mom ran to the grocery store next door).  She loved every minute of it and was so happy when someone she knew came to see her in it.  So days were spent driving to and from the Covey center in Provo, doing hair, ushering and attending performances.  It was a busy but fun week.  I love seeing Allison just letting loose on the stage.  Or other places like when I take her carpool out for ice cream after an evening performance.

One night our Activity day girls got to go which meant Robyn got to see her twice.  On Saturday we all went as a family, even my brother David who was in town on his way from Moab back to California.  Spencer even reluctantly and grudgingly brought his baby.

Monday morning Spencer came home with twins - PB and J.

He had to carry them with him to every class and activity.  Every night at 2 am he had to get up with them.  He refused to ever, ever let me take a photo of him carrying his babies.  Going to young men's carrying his twins just stretched his self consiousness to the breaking point.  And then on Friday...

he came home with Kathryn, robotic baby.  It has sensors that makes it cry at intervals till it is fed, changed, burped or held.  And Spencer needs to be able to respond within 2 minutes at all times as he is wearing the corresponding sensor for the baby to recognize around his wrist.  Spencer spent the weekend very unhappy with this assignment and full of embarrassment that anyone might see him or hear her cry.  He would walk around muttering about "my freaking health class" while his baby would go from a gentle cry to a very loud demanding cry.  Going to church and to Allison's play was super painful for him.  The middle of the night cries just made me laugh.  He is so happy to be turning his baby back in to the school tomorrow and swears he is not going to be a parent for a long, long time.  This week we registered Spencer for high school.  It felt strange to be figuring out when he would take Drivers Ed and which MEHAP teacher would be best.  Doesn't seem like he would be old enough to be doing this yet.

Robyn came home my parents Monday night late.  She was so excited to show me the temporary tattoos my sister had painted all over her arms.  I really missed having her be around, our house seemed so empty and quiet.  When I was teaching art this week I saw an essay of hers on the wall and thought it summed up her life quite well.

I got to be at school a little more than usual this week because of health week.  I would help hand out tickets as kids ran laps or one day participated with the police in a seat belt safety machine.  It was fun to see Robyn running around with her friends and circling back periodically to give me a hug.  Allison would circle around to give me a pinch when my back was turned and then run away giggling.

This year we split up Easter a little bit.  Sunday kids woke up to Easter baskets and to find the eggs they dyed yesterday were hidden around the house.

Then after our traditional breakfast of egg salad sandwiches (my brother David said that was a little hard core for breakfast but kids insisted) we went about our day of church stuff, going up to the canyon to play and hanging out trying to help Jeremy with some shots he needed for the church.

After a dinner of leftovers and bunny rolls and seeing David off we did a family home evening where we went through the atonement and the cruxifiction.  And then we sent everyone off to bed - my favorite part.  Tomorrow we are having bunny Monday with Jason's family.  A big easter egg candy hunt and a traditional dinner.  I am liking the splitting up of the holiday.  It makes it seem not so crazy.  And honestly after this week I am ready to slow things down a bit.

I didn't even do Easter dresses this year but Robyn improvised.  She bought herself a scarf in China Town with my parents and got sunglasses in her basket - she was set for church.

Taylor is still doing well.  This week I finished up our paperwork and went to turn everything into the court clerk and pay all the fees.  Now we just have to wait for the court date to be set.  Hopefully in a month we will officially be Taylor's guardians.  Now to register him for the I am not kidding.

This Friday night our new respite worker started, Sarah.  She is an aide at Taylor's school so already knows Taylor pretty well.  I think the full court press by Robyn who wanted to show her every doll she ever owned took her a little off guard but she rallied quickly.  Jeremy and I got to enjoy dinner out with friends without worrying about what was going on at home.

One day this week I told Jeremy I am just tired.  For no reason but I just needed to lay down and take a nap.  So I did.  It has been one of those weeks.  Wonderful and happy but just full of stuff.  Things come up.  Getting the battery replaced in the van.  Getting the garage door fixed.  Trying to find pants for Spencer that would actually fit.  Getting all our taxes in and paid.  Just stuff.  So this week I am looking forward to more family and less stuff time.  And I will enjoy it all the more because of a week of craziness and activities.  And to start it all off with a bang - tomorrow we head to the dentist for Robyn to get her glow in the dark butterfly decorated retainer (her choice) and for her to get several teeth pulled.  She is very excited.  The tooth fairy better start stocking up now.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Spring Break

This week was spring break for our kids.  Our kids were a little disillusioned by my spring break plans.  We started off with a bang by going to the dentist.  Robyn got fitted for her first retainer about which she is very excited and everyone has plans to go back to pull wonky teeth or get a cavity fixed.  Then we kept the fun going all week with shopping trips to find new jeans (mom, do I really have to try them on, why, ugh, I hate shopping - because Spencer got up one morning and could no longer bend over in his jeans), the girls had a jump rope party where they learned how to do double dutch, we went to the Natural History museum where they just happened to have an exhibit on chocolate...

And because I am me and as Spencer says the serial killer of all funness during Spring Break all the kids deep cleaned their rooms and worked on getting the yard in shape.  Our spring break plans stay a little homey mainly because Allison is in the throes of rehearsals for her play.  So she has practices for 5 hours every afternoon/evening and all day Saturday right now.  She come home giddy with excitement over her play. Spencer and Allison have had a few late nights watching movies and some long afternoons where they wonder what they could possibly do when I turn the TV off.

The highlights of the week though were Robyn flying solo out to California to spend some time with my parents.  She was up bright and early Wednesday and all packed and sitting in the car ready to go.  I felt serious tugs on my heart strings as she rolled her little suitcase through the airport, gave me a wave and was off on the airplane by herself. 
She has been looking forward to this trip for months.  She has been going to China Town, walking the Golden Gate bridge, going to the beach, the San Jose tech museum, watching old movies and eating ice cream. She is in grandchild heaven.  My dad sent me a picture of her new outfit.  When Allison went on her grandparent trip my dad bought her a little Chinese dress.  She would never let Robyn even touch that dress and it is packed away in her memory box.  So of course Robyn had to get one two, but she assured me that she got a different color so Allison won't get mad and think she is copying her.

And our grand finale of the week was having my brother David and his family come stay with us for a few days on their way down to Moab to go jeeping.  They drove some crazy insane hours so they could get here and we were all excited to see them.  Saturday we celebrate JJ's 7th birthday by going out to the waffle truck, practicing our flips at a trampoline place (Griselda talked me into being able to do a flip), and enjoying tacos and cake courtesy of David and Griselda.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

General Conference

Conference weekend means lots of sugar, food and family time.  Kids have made their nests on the floor with blankets.  Robyn has set up a doll and art station.  Spencer occupies a couch with as many pillows as he can grab.  Allison has a blanket set up for her rabbit to run around on.  They talk in whispers as they try to figure out how to play war card games or color pictures together while still being able to hear.  Jeremy set up an omelet bar and whipped out omelets for everyone.  Kids were reminded of Grandma Lauri with bacon waffles.  Jeremy and Spencer got their bi-yearly carnivore meal at Chubby's after priesthood.  And with all that in the background we get to listen to conference all weekend and put regular life on hold.  Luckily the weather outside has been rainy which helps everyone want to just hang out and enjoy the weekend.

I set up bags of treats for every apostle.  After they speak if kids can tell me what they said they get to have the treat.  They are definitely listening better but I have three little faces in my face every time it looks like an apostle is closing their talk ready to be the first to tell me what they learned.

And true love is when your husband is willing to get out and pump up everyone's bike tires so he can take them for a bike ride and get some of the cabin fever burned up.

Spencer is taking drawing this semester and was quite proud of the drawing he made of himself as a little kid.  I was impressed at what a good job he did.  He learned the hard way why I tell him to clip hang nails and cuticles.  He managed to kill a finger nail and it is slowly and grossily growing back.  But on a sweet note he did ask me to pray for his fingernail several times.

Allison is in the middle of rehearsals for her play so she gets home from school and half an hour leaves and comes back right at bed time.  She is tired but loving it.  This week she did the math placement test for next year and I got to meet with her new teacher.  Still can't believe that she is at this point in her life.  She also had her girls camp kick off about which she is very excited.

Taylor is doing really well again and is walking everywhere.  We are hiring two new respite workers to work with him which will be nice.  Friday night we had a date and Allison had rehearsal and Spencer was invited to the movies, leaving us babysitter less.  Luckily Allison's friend saved the day for us and Robyn thought she was so lucky to be having a party at her house with Allison's friend.  I think one of her dream situations is to have all of Allison's friends over without Allison to interfer in Robyn's fun.

Allison is in the midst