Friday, September 30, 2011


This week I took the twins up to the fair for FFA day.  They are a little young for high school, you say?  Well, as Ryan was spending the school day at the fair with some of his students, we thought we would go see Ryan during his work day. 

I got to see how his display turned out.
After walking around (where we got stopped by other FFA teachers to chat frequently), we had lunch.  I brought a picnic lunch, but we supplemented with fair food.  But not the Deep Fried Butter.  Can you imagine?  Deep. Fried. Butter.  Seriously?  I think my cholesterol went up just passing by that booth.
We stopped by the Wool Growers Assoc. for some lamb ribs.
It is tradition to get Elephant Ears.  This is Annie not wanting to share hers.

Momma's Little Helper

There's something about fall.  The weather starts to cool a little, and I start wanting to bake and craft.  I thought some rolls sounded really good.  Of course, my Darling Little Helpers got in on the action.  They helped measure and mix and knead.
How can I say no to that face?
I sent a picture of this to my mother-in-law.  She wrote back that it looked like good fun.  (I couldn't help but add, "Except for the cleaning lady.  Meaning me...."  but only to myself.   I'm such a negative person, I guess.)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Message Me

I had a meeting tonight.  I met with the other members of the Primary (kids at church) presidency, the music director and pianist, to discuss the upcoming Primary program.  It was to start at 8 pm and last a half hour.  (That would be amazingly short...)  I didn't want to be there too long, so I told Ryan to shoot me a text message after a while.  This is something we do for each other, in case a meeting drags on and we need an excuse to leave. 

At 9 pm sharp, I got this message:

"If you don't come home soon I am going to wake up all the kids, make them cry, and feed them chocolate and marshmallows and soda, and get them dirty.  See you soon."

I laughed out loud.  Good thing I was already in the car, ready to come home.  (This is not a typical example of Ryan's reason-to-escape text.)

Monday, September 26, 2011

Fort Walla Walla

Last Saturday we took a drive to go see some friends who had moved away over the summer.  They took us to Fort Walla Walla during the afternoon.

The kids found a replica of a covered wagon with all kinds of supplies that a pioneer family would take, and they had to try to cram it all in.  They decided we could leave the barrel of whiskey and fine china behind.
Instead of walking nicely down the hill, the kids (and "older kids") rolled.
This tree truck they estimated germinated in the year 1200 AD.  It was big!
The inside of this teepee wasn't especially welcoming looking.  There were dead, clumpy weeds throughout. 

Friday, September 23, 2011

Stop, Go

I find it interesting to watch the twins.  They get along really well.  For two-year-olds anyway. 

Annie and Maddie have recently discovered stopping, going and going fast in the car.  Every time the car stops, someone yells from the back, "Go Mommy!"  ("It's a red light.  Red light means stop.  Tell me when you see a green light- that means 'Go.'")  If I don't seem to be going fast enough, I hear, "Go fast Mommy!"  ("I am going as fast as I can.  This is not the freeway.")

This has spilled over into other aspects of our lives.  When I push the grocery cart, I hear, "Stop!  Go!  Stop!  Stop!  Go!  Stop!"  They prefer it when I play along.

Then yesterday Annie and Maddie were in the living room when Annie started telling Maddie to stop and go.  They giggled while Maddie played Annie's game.  That's the great thing about twins- where else do you find a two-year-old playing a game with another two-year-old?  (If only they would use their twin super powers for good creativity, instead of the other kind...)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

{Fall Craftiness}

A couple weeks ago, I found this pumpkin tutorial and I thought, I have got to make me a couple of those.  I browsed the local fabric selection and decided it would have to wait.  (Ugh, Walmart.  'Nough said.)

Eventually I found myself in Y- and I stopped by a fabric store.  I spent $6 on fabric and I was set.  I already had stuffing and felt, so I got out the sewing machine after lunch and made two pumpkins.  They came out really cute, so I sent a picture message to my sister-in-law and proudly pointed them out to Ryan when he got home from work.

He thought they were great.  And he wanted about 8 more in 36 hours for his FFA fair display.

(I'm impressed.  Ryan can take my happy little craft project and it turn it into something stressful.  Oh well.) 

I got very little else done yesterday, but by the time I got to bed last night, the pumpkins were done!
I put them in a plastic garbage sack and drove them up to the fair (along with a whole lot of other stuff piled in the back of the minivan) this morning.  Ryan took the school pickup full of produce, display board, hops and students up to the fair, and I followed along behind with the twins and all the decorations.

I hope everyone is very nice to my pumpkins because I want them back.  And soon.  I'm counting the days until they can come home. :)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Terrible Twos

I think Annie and Maddie are conspiring to convince me it is not worth showering.

Monday afternoon I put them down for their nap and jumped in the shower.  About 5 minutes later my clean clothes were in the toilet, they had stripped down and joined me in the shower.  So I plugged the tub and decided they can't get into too much trouble in the bath.

I had to leave the bathroom to go find new clothing.

Annie and Maddie pulled every towel into the bath with them by the time I got back.

I went down to the laundry room to make room in the washing machine for some stuff.  (This generally requires me moving the dry clothes out of the dryer, and the wet clothes out of the washer.)  When I came back, it took me a second to realize why the floor was so shiny.  Obviously Annie and Maddie's boat (which was the bathtub) was taking on water, and they needed to bail it out.

I may have shaken my fists in the general direction of the bathtub.

I didn't shower again until today.  I put it off as long as possible after last time, and with good reason.

Again, I got the twins down for their nap and got ready for a quick shower.  About 8 minutes later Maddie came into the bathroom to tell me she was "stinky" and Annie had "pee'd."  Usually she doesn't tell me about Annie's diaper situation, so I figured something funky was up.

It was.

Annie had taken off her diaper to put on a too-small bathing suit that I thought was packed away in their closet.  Then she had an accident on her floor.  Annie looked at me with her big eyes when I got to her room, and said, "Uh oh, Mommy.  Clean up!"

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Sunshine Days

This morning after Emma's soccer game, we took the girls down to the Sunshine Days parade.  Our town is fond of a good parade, and anyone who is anyone finds a way to participate and the parade goes on and on.  I think a 45 minute parade is pretty long for a town of our size.  We stood right at the start of the parade and scored big in the candy department.  The kids were stoked.

Afterwards we walked down to the hospital for some entertainment and a health fair for kids.  Cowboy Buck and Elizabeth were there to serenade us.  Emma got picked to go up and help with one of the songs.  We think the puppet Peter had a bit of a crush on Emma.
I, of course, being the prepared mom that I am, did not bring the camera and had to make due with my little cell phone camera.

(Perhaps you can tell- we were a little short on sunshine for our Sunshine Days.)

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

That's How We Roll

Last weekend we took the girls bowling.

Annie and Maddie wore bowling shoes in the smallest size they had.  Even still, the shoes were of clown-ish proportions.
I'm telling you, bowling with kids is the way to go.  They put up the bumpers, and every one's score improves.
One game of bowling lasts forever with small kids.  Someone pushes the ball down the ramp..... and 2 minutes later it arrives at the pins.  The little ones had a great time.  I liked it because my score broke 100. :)

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Emma Plays

Emma played her first soccer game Saturday morning.  She'd only had one soccer practice ever, but she got out there and did her best.
We are looking forward to the next 5 weeks of games and practices, and practices and games. :)

Thursday, September 8, 2011

In Which Danae Becomes a Soccer Mom

Tonight was a big night for us.  Ryan had his soccer coaching debut (his soccer-anything, coaching-anything debut, actually), and Elizabeth played soccer for the first time. 
Ryan and his team of 1st grade girls
Elizabeth is the girl in the pink soccer socks.

I had one of my "bad mom moments" again tonight.  Emma preferred sitting by the team, leaving me to chase the twins around 3 other simultaneous soccer games.  Along our wanderings, we found some friends we knew, so we sat down to watch their game for a few minutes.  And... then I noticed that Annie was missing.

And Ryan was holding her.

I asked him later how long he had held Annie.  "Oh, about a minute is all.  Everyone laughed when she ran out."  

I can't even have a conversation at soccer games, I guess.  Those girls run away so fast.  And then I got to walk off the field holding a kicking and screaming 2-year-old.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Sticky Fingers

Having twin 2-year-olds has been an adventure.  One day, though, they are going to get me in trouble.

I took the kids with me shopping this morning.  We wandered the mall, and played in the kids area.  I picked up a little cardigan sweater at JC Penneys, and later checked out DownEast Basics.  The twins, like most little girls, love anything sparkly.  They piled on as many bracelets as their little arms could hold while I was looking at the necklaces.  Once I was done looking we put all those bracelets away, and checked out the clearance.  I found something I wanted to try on, so I herded us into a dressing room.  In the time it took me to change my shirt, Maddie had found the dental floss in my purse and was pulling about 2 yards out, and Annie was putting bracelets on her arms.


Yep, there were about 3 or 4 more in the JC Penney bag.  Oh dear.

So I decided against the shirt, and went back over to the jewelry to put the bracelets away.  Instead I bought a necklace, which (hopefully) explained why I was back over in the jewelry area.

I double checked both my purse and bags before leaving the mall.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

It's a School Day

We thought this day might never come.  Elizabeth has been counting the days until the first day of school for about 2 weeks.  She would wake up in the morning and ask, "Is it a school day yet?"

I was able to say "yes" finally this morning.

Last night I sat down with the girls, and we divided up all the school supplies and tried to cram in all the boxes of kleenex, Lysol wipes and whatnot, along with the crayons, pencils, scissors and folders.  (It was a tight fit this morning with their lunch boxes.)  Then we read until 9 o'clock because I figured they were too excited to go to sleep anyway.

Last year, Emma missed the bus on the first day of school.  I figured being outside 10 minutes before the bus was supposed to arrive would be plenty.  I was wrong.  So this year, I was going to outsmart the bus system, and start keeping an eye out about 20 minutes before hand.  We'd take pictures and hang out by our house until closer to the bus' ETA.

Well, 45 minutes later, I called the bus garage.  They a) couldn't get a hold of our bus, and b) thought it was possible the routes were changed since published in the newspaper.


So I got the twins in some clothes, had the neighbor girl ask her mom if I should take her too, and away we went.

When I got back home, there was a message waiting for me saying yes, the bus route has been changed, and our pick-up time is about 25 minutes earlier.

So I complained on facebook about our lame bus system, and found out ours was not the only bus route to experience changes and misses. 

There's nothing like good planning.  (But we wouldn't know anything about it here.)

Ready, Set, Go

The high school where Ryan works is undergoing a remodel.  After Thanksgiving break last year, Ryan was no longer in his classroom, since his building was going to be torn down.  Many of the teachers being bumped got temporary classrooms somewhere else, but Ryan was one of the special few who got to be a traveling teacher.  This means Ryan had a different classroom each period.  The school paid for a large hiking backpack for him, and that was essentially Ryan's "office" for the rest of the school year.

So he's been looking forward to having a classroom again.

Originally, the 1st phase was supposed to be done Aug. 12th for teachers to start moving in.

About that time, an article in the newspaper ran with an article saying the remodel was "on time" and "under budget" and the move-in time would be Aug 24th.

Next we got a letter from the Superintendent saying teacher move-in day was the 25th, but this is still considered "on time" and the project is "under budget."

Teachers arrived on this day.  Some laughed.  Some panicked.  Some had their stress-levels go haywire.

It was no where near done. 

Ryan didn't have his boxes of supplies arrive in his room for another week.

Within this last week or so, the heating and cooling got up and running, Ryan's outlets worked- didn't- and now maybe work again, the building was cleaned- worked on- and got construction dust everywhere again.

The doors never arrived, so the old doors got installed in the new buildings.  Certain windows are not on-site, and so not installed.  Ryan's tables are in his room, and told that the table tops would be installed after the first day of school.

Excuse me?

So Ryan is putting them together. 

This is what Ryan's new class room looked like 2 days ago.
Those boxes belong to another teacher, and were just stored there until yesterday when Ryan found himself a fork lift and helped them find a new home.

No worries, though.  The remodel is "on time" and "under budget."

Monday, September 5, 2011

A Surprise

One day last week, I was sitting in the rocking chair and holding Maddie.  All 3 of the rest of the girls were on the couch watching their daily movie, but Maddie was needing some Mommy snuggle time.  I happened to notice a familiar face drive by our house.  I did a quick glance around the living room- it wasn't too bad for company. 

But then that familiar face didn't ever come to our door.  A minute or two later, I saw him putting his seat belt on as he was driving away.

I found this odd.  We live on a dead-end street, and as far as I knew, Ryan's friend didn't know anyone else on our small street.  But what do I know?

After lunch, the girls went outside to play.  A little while later, Emma and Elizabeth came inside bursting with exciting information.  "Mom- one of the quail turned yellow!"

(If you remember from this post, we are the proud owners of Ryan's latest project- 10 quail.)

The quail have long since lost their yellow fuzz and have been strutting their grown-up feathers for a week or two now.  They don't just revert back.  And I'm pretty sure I have my craft paint securely locked up, so that can't be it.  So I followed the girls outside to see what the fuss was about.

Inside the quail box, there was this little guy-
"Guys, that is not a quail.  That is a duck."

"Whoa!  Cool!  How did that get in there??"

So I did a little calculation in my head. 

1. Ryan was gone, and hadn't mentioned anything about adding another mouth to feed before leaving for work. 
2. Bishop R gave Ryan the quail eggs, and was aware of the box in the backyard housing the quail.
3. I just witnessed Bishop R driving by our house not 2 hours ago.


Sadly, "Ducky" was shivering and getting pecked at in the quail house, so I found the heat lamp again and put Ducky in a recycle bin.  Ryan has since blocked off a corner of the quail house so the quail don't pick on Ducky.  Quail can be quite vicious, apparently.

The girls are happy to pick up, pet, squish and love him in all forms.  Ducky is lucky we haven't "loved" him to death.  He seems to like us.  He follows the kids around when we let him out of the box.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Toddler Speak

A new computer arrived yesterday.  I did a happy dance.  No more randomly shutting down, no more losing what I was working on.  I should be posting more often again.
Annie and Maddie's language skills are really taking off.  Some of it still sounds like gibberish to me, but at other times, I can understand a string of 3 or 4 words together.  It's a good feeling.

These are a few of the cute and funny things they have been saying.

"You in subble" -You in trouble  (Maddie points her finger at you and says this with her serious/mean face)

"Daddy Suck" -Daddy's truck

"Nasty" - all dirty things

"Beeeeg Poop" - all dirty diapers

"Ew Bug" - any visible bug or small clump of dirt on the floor or dark fuzzy or....

"Beeg Tail" - big pony tail

"f*@#" - fork

"Suck" - sock

"I Wuv You Mommy" - this one is my favorite