UT adventures #1: father's day party

On June 18th, me and the kids hit the road towards UT.  We first swung by Seattle to pick up my dad from the airport.  He accompanied us on the drive since a pregnant mom with 3 kids in the back of the van would make for a LONG road trip.  So he kind of saved us from insanity!
We made a 2 day trip out of it, stopping in Baker City, OR overnight.  It is a fun little town.  We found a fun place to eat where there is a toy train that goes around the restaurant over and over again.  It kept the kids pretty entertained.
We eventually got to UT and I was so relieved.  Traveling with the kids is never fun.
I'll be documenting my adventures in UT in the next few posts....

End of June, we had a big Father's Day party at Jack & Jill's in Lehi.  We rented out 4 lanes in their private area and also did a game of laser tag.  It was too fun to do with all the family.  The kids loved the bowling.

Aaron is the best brother-in-law ever.  He is SO good with the kids and helped them the whole time.  My kids love him to death and always talk about Aaron.

The package included pizza & cake.  Not too shabby.  Papa John's is way better than the pizza we got here but I wasn't complaining.  I was starving at that point.

Luke loved bowling TOO much.  He wanted his turn every time.  He doesn't quite get the "take turns" idea.  So this is what he did majority of the time.  He can be quite exhausting when you're a single parent....

for granted.

Some things you just take for granted when you are at home.  This is my list:
-Your kind of toothpaste
-Your own room
-Your own bed
-Not sleeping with a 2 year old boy
-Eating your usual foods
-Fresh produce
-Cool days
-No Traffic
-Small Town
-Pacific Time Zone
-Luke in his own room
-My home ward
-My friends
-My shower
-My lotion
-Ok, my house in general
-Let's not forget the most important one: Joe.

Luke and our newest Niece, Isabelle.

We've been in UT for about a week and a half so far.  We've got another week and a half to go.  It's been a great break with family.  The kids have loved it.  We do this every summer.  I think this has been the longest stay yet....and it'll probably be the last time it'll be this long!  Total, we'll be gone for about 3 weeks!

We've been able to do lots of things so far:
-Girl Matinee to Brave
-Lehi Pool
-Princess Festival
-Ice Cream Cones galore
-Seeing the birth of my newest nephew
-Seeing my newest niece
-Seeing my brother come home after a 2-year mission
-Watch the cousins become closer, play and making memories with family

That's just the tip.  There are many more things in store.  I love it here, I really do.  But when you have your own small family, trying to adjust, feel comfortable and situated, it is more like a chore, not a vacation.
And it really helps you to realize how much you miss home and love where you live.

better late than never...explained.

As of right now, i'm about 21 weeks along....
So why has it taken me this long to share the news?  Well, I wanted to wait until I came to visit family in UT and surprise them with the news!

I was very set on being done at 3.  Was petrified at the thought of more kids.  I probably told that to everyone I met last year.  "ya, i'm done.  3 is plenty for me!"  But deep down, I was just so dang scared.  Scared of not being able to handle more than 3 since it was such a big adjustment for me.  I was barely holding on with the kids I had.  So the thought of more was horrifying.  Also, with Joe being in school with the past 3, it seemed I was a single parent.  So hard!
But as the kids have gotten older, and school has come to a close, I came to realize that I could handle another one and it wouldn't just be me taking care of it.   This pregnancy has been different than all the rest.  Maybe it's the distraction of the other 3?  Or that i've come to know what helps?  Who knows but I was able to get through the difficult 1st Trimester better than I thought I would!

So it now being June, here we are!

And this time around, I decided to have some fun and not tell my family until I surprised them when I came into town today.
Boy, were they surprised!  I was excited to finally share this news with them.  I can't believe I kept it from them this long!!  There were times that were really hard and wanted to talk to them about it.  But I knew it would be too much fun surprising them so I kept my mouth shut.  But the day has finally come.  It was really exciting.  My parents will have 4 new grandkids now in 2012!  That's crazy!

And the video was not my idea.  Pinterest came to the rescue for this one.  I saw a similar thing on it and thought it was so cute so I wanted to do something similar.  The kids did great so it turned out fun.

Emma's Last Day of Kindergarten

Emma has finished Kindergarten!  It's been such a great year!  I've been lucky enough to help out pretty frequently in her class.  It has been such a great group of kids!  For the last day of school, they showed us parents some fun songs and dances.

Then we got their books and were able to sign everyone's books.  My OCD child preferred to erase everyone's signature and write it herself so she could read it...lol i'm including this tidbit for the future.

Then they had a picnic outside until the end of class.  It was a fun time to see everyone one last time before school let out.  We are going to miss Mrs. Brandt.  She was so patient and great to Emma.  It will be a great foundation for her :)

broken record

I  am at my wit's end with the disobedience that goes on in my household.  I feel like a broken record, telling my kids "no" or "sorry" over and over and over again.  It is really REALLY frustrating.  It gets to a point where I kick them outside to play because I can't handle their "asking" over and over again when i've already answered them.  Is there a solution for this?  For them to hear the first time I say it?  It's driving me nuts.  And i'm scared to death of next week, when school will be out and I will be with all 3 of them all the time.

Don't get me wrong.  Love my kids to death.  But seriously?  Their type of behavior can only be endured for so long!  I would love any parenting advice or tips on how to handle this.

I don't want to be the annoyed, angry mom in this home.  I want to be the loving, fun, respected mom who is super awesome.  That's not too much to ask, right?


Over Memorial Day weekend, Joe got into the fishing mood and we went over to Beehive Lake and tried our luck.  We first went up Saturday with no luck.
Then we went up again on Monday.  We were there for about 5 hours and got 4 fish!  
Um not going to lie, there were many times that we were bored out of our minds but we were determined to get some fish so we could have dinner that night!
But the kids had fun exploring the area....

Luke did love to fish.   He would take a pole and fling it into the water, like he was casting.  It'll be fun once he's a bit older to go out with Joe.

We were so excited when we got our first one!

 And here's our last one...about 3 hours later.  And we packed up right after that because at that point, we had all had enough fishing for one weekend.  Once we got home, Joe grilled those suckers up and he and the kids gobbled them up.  I don't do fish.


anyone else love Kate's first attempt at my name?  lol
A few days ago, I was having a rough day.  It seemed that I just kept harping at the kids, which then makes me feel cruddy.  I went into my room to take a break and lie down.  I found this on my pillow.

Sweet Kate had made it and sneaked it into my room to find later.  I was kind of just in awe at my little Kate.  I called her in and asked her if she made this.  She told me she did cause she loved me and she saw I was sad.  *tear*

We spent the next 1/2 hour snuggling in my bed.  That kind of changed my outlook at my attitude and my kids.  They are so fragile and aware at their parents.  Makes me feel even worse when i'm not at my best.  But they are so forgiving and i am so grateful for that.  Because, surprisingly, even us parents make mistakes ;)

lunch time.

Luke has been very independent lately.  I keep finding him knee-deep in something that he really should be getting help with but he is determined to do for himself.
I found him making himself a peanut butter & nutella sandwich the other day.  He was totally zoned into the task.  It was really dang cute watching him opening the jars and getting all messy, trying to spread the stuff onto the bread.  
I had to let him finish and eat his final product.

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