Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Happy Birthday Mom!!

Thursday is my mom's 60th birthday. We will celebrate one of life's great women. She didn't cure cancer. She didn't solve the health care crisis. She didn't even go to college. But, what she did do is even more amazing than any of those things. This woman's life has been so exemplary. I aspire to be half the woman she is. I owe all that I am to the woman who has persevered through everything life can throw at you. She has taught me that life is hard and there is no way around that fact. All we can do is control our reaction to those difficult times. She has taught me to stick up for myself and for what I believe in. There is nothing in this world worth sacrificing your principles; NOTHING. She has taught me about trust. When trust is lost, it is a long, hard road to get it back. But, get it back we must. Love is nothing without trust. She has taught me that being a grandparent is totally worth all the crazy you have to go through as a parent. She has also taught me that once you are a mother, you are always a mother. I will ALWAYS need her. She has taught me how to hold my tongue when necessary. She has taught me to speak up when it is important. She has taught me that loyalty to family is paramount. She has taught me that service is the way to show love for those around you and our Father in Heaven. Above all, Helen Briggs has taught me that I am a good person, with lots to offer, and if I do, I will be blessed.

It was my utmost pleasure to orchestrate, with my sister and brothers, a surprise party for her on Saturday night. We had delicious tiny food and a great time showing her our love. Mom, you are the greatest! It is a great honor to be your daughter. I hope I can please you always.

what's new pussycat?

Happy Thanksgiving everyone. And welcome to the holiday season. On Thursday the whole family went to Knott's Berry Farm to celebrate Christmas. I know, it's a little early but everyone was in town. We started this last year in lieu of gifts. We thought is was better to spend money to BE together rather than for more stuff, which we just have too much of. Last year was great. We went the Saturday before Christmas and the park was almost empty. We thought Thanksgiving would be quiet too, what with all the people home eating turkey. We were wrong. But, since we had all the little ones with us, we spent most of the day in Camp Snoopy which was more than doable. Some highlights:

Abby on "Huf-n-Puf":

Jake on "Huf-n-Puf":

Mom, Jake, and Elijah driving the semis:

Spencer had a great time:

Grandma, Elijah, Jake, and Uncle Chuck on Lucy's Tugboat:
A family picture:

On Friday we had our Thanksgiving feast which was just lovely. Brent made another amazing turkey with all the goodies to go with it.

Auntie Laura was rescued (see the oct 16, 07 entry). My brother sacrificed his sweet little girl's arm to the itchy insulated depths of our wall. Abby got hold of the doll, but quickly released it. Once we knew where it was, Darrin enlisted the use of his wife's delicate little hands to reach in and rescue the doll. Reunited and it feels so good.

And now the tree is up, the dog is chewing it to pieces, and we are looking forward to celebrating the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ. I wish you all a fantastic (low stress) holiday season.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

pupply life

We are having lots of fun with the dog. It is quite an adjustment, but I think we are transitioning well. We are crate training, and the dog really loves the concept. I'm pretty impressed with it myself.

Oliver Twist is learning quickly who is easiest to manipulate. I am trying to train him to be a well mannered dog, but the kids aren't setting the best example. My goal is to avoid people food and table scraps as much as possible, I'm not real fond of the dog begging at the table. But, Oliver has quickly learned that the little ones are happy to give him any treat he wants.
This past weekend, I had a wedding cake:

Pretty hah. Anyway, I was baking all day Friday while trying to keep an eye on the shenanigans of toddlers and puppies. I looked away for a few seconds. I heard a crunch by the back door and noticed that the dog was eating something. I went to investigate as I hadn't given him anything. To my horror, and utter confusion, there was a raw egg, ON MY CARPET. Several things flashed through my mind.

  • how did the dog reach the counter? he can barely climb up the stairs.
  • will a raw eggs make him sick?
  • will I be cleaning up puppy vomit in the very near future?
  • then: SPENCER!
While trying to clean up the egg (which is nearly impossible with all of the sliminess and such) I asked Spencer, "Did you give the puppy an egg?"

He was proud of his dastardly little deed. Now, I can handle the crazy things toddlers do, and the pitfalls of puppy hood, but when they conspire against me, I am at a loss.

I got the egg cleaned up, but dogs have very advanced olfactory abilities. He could still smell the egg. I have tried everything, he now LOVES that spot on the carpet. And it shows. Anyone know how to shave berber carpet so its not all fuzzy and ugly?

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

oh yeah

We also had Halloween. We weren't too original this year. Jake was Ron Weasley. He was Harry Potter last year so we used the same costume, minus the glasses and scar. Elijah was a cowboy again; he hates change. Spencer was supposed to be a doctor, but at the last minute, he decided he wanted to wear the snake costume that I made for jake when he was a baby. YAY recycled costumes.

and our pumpkin was Blues's Clues.

Puppy Love!

We got a puppy!! I can't believe it. After a year of begging and oohing and awing over cute puppies, we finally got one. He is a chocolate Lab and he is just about the cutest thing ever. I'm sure in future posts I will be screaming about how much I hate poop, but right now, he is an angel.