Sunday, October 30, 2016

The Primary Program

Today we had our Primary program. This was June's 2nd time in the program and it was my first primary program as Primary President. 

I want to tell you a little bit about the whole experience. But first let me tell you about June and her part in the program. June is in the CTR 4/5 class. She sang great and delivered her line perfect. She had it memorized and didn't need help at all. Her line was: "Through Heavenly Father's plan I was given a body, to live on this earth and learn to take good care of it." 

So now a little bit about my experience on the Primary Program. It is so much freaking work. Holy crap. As a parent with  a child in primary I never really understood what it takes to run a primary and what it takes to make and deliver a primary program. It is intense. 
We started planning back in August. We didn't want just some lame program where we write the kids parts for them or just sing the songs. We wanted to add a little extra. Thankfully I have the most amazing music leader ever!! I will be crushed when she moves, but we won't be far behind her so maybe that will be the new Primary Presidents problem. Hahaha. Just kidding. 
We planned for the children to write their own parts. We prepared for this and had the teachers help us. We have some pretty awesome primary teachers. And some not so great ones. I honestly have never heard full grown adults complain so much about the pettiest things. AH! So annoying. Sorry, off topic. 
The children wrote their own parts and then I spent the next couple weeks making them fit into a primary program. Then we practiced and practiced and practiced. Our music director didn't just stick to the songs in the outline, she took the time to study different music, get permission from the bishop and then teach them to the kids. She was amazing at putting all the songs together. We had musical numbers and instruments that were included into the song. It was a lot to put together. 
Then it finally came and we were ready to put on the program. 

I was a ball of nerves going into church today. I was worried about the time, if the kids would deliver their parts and how everything would go... 
It went pretty darn well. A few hiccups put the kids put on a fantastic program. We did great on the time and most of the kids delivered their parts beautifully. I was basically in tears the whole meeting. I was sitting on the pulpit, front row to help kids who needed their lines, so I tried to stay strong. But the tears fell anyways. The spirit, the relief that it was over and the joy I felt in my heart from my primary children. It truly was a great Sacrament meeting. 

Our presidency had made invites for the children to take to their non member friends or less active friends who would enjoy coming to the program. The kids loved it and our Bishop loved it. We also held a small reception with refreshments, after the program for those who were visiting the church or weren't members. The missionaries were there to talk to them and answer any questions that they may of had. It was a total success and even though it was a bit more work to put together on top of already planning the primary program, I am so glad we did it. I received an email from the Bishop which I will always keep. It was such a kind email, but in it he mentioned how we had over 300 people in the congregation that day. He said it was a new record! He was really excited about that and hearing that made all the stress and effort worth it. 

With all that said I want to say how grateful I am for this experience to be Primary President. It is so much work and sometimes so intense that I wonder why I was chosen. But I was and I am leading in the best way I know how and what I feel is right for the children. Sometimes it's such a thankless job. People just don't understand what it takes to keep 53 children prompt and ready. To some children that is the only time that they hear church related topics so we are teaching them everything. It's scary and overwhelming and I truly love it. 
So if you are reading this and have a child in primary, go thank your primary presidency. Thank them for their hard work, thank them for putting that primary program together that your child sang and shared their words, that made your heart swell. It started with your primary presidency. Thank them. Reach out to them. Trust me, I have never loved some random person in my ward more, than those who have reached out to me today and said thank you. 

And now I feel I can breathe. 

Kate's 9 month Stats

Weight: 18lbs (35th percentile) 
Height: 28.0in (65th percentile)
Head Circ: 43.2 (26th percentile) 

These two did pretty good together. It was a long doctors appointment but we survived. Two kiddos getting shots on the same day made for one sad appointment. Thank goodness for suckers and stickers! 

Owen's Stats at 3!

Owen was mad because he had to wear the gown. So we took it off, gave him his third sucker and continued on with our appointment. 

Weight: 33lbs (64th percentile)
Height: 38.5in (76th percentile)

We were so so happy that daddy arrived! It would have been a long two hour appointment without him there. 

My October

Guys, we survived October. Well I guess there is still one more day, but it's Halloween and it's all fun stuff!

Our October was pretty busy and I just wanted to document all that happened.

It all started with us being in charge of our Church cleaning.
Family Pictures
Scouts Dinner (blogged about)
Recharter meeting for scouts (Thank goodness for my 1st Councilor!!)
Design Center for house (EXCITED TO BLOG ABOUT!)
June's Birthday (blogged about)
Design Center again
June's Birthday Party (blogged about)
MCO Choir Performance (great experience! We sang at the Temple workers fireside)
Owen's Birthday
Owen's Birthday Party
Kate & Owen's Doctor appointments (2 hours long! and still need to blog!)
Owen's Halloween Parade
Owen's Halloween Party
June's Halloween Parade
In charge of June's School Halloween Party (coming in a later blog post)
Primary Program Saturday Practice
Primary Program (Will blog about later)
Reception after Primary Program

Plus all our extra Halloween festivities and our everyday life. And a few more outings that happened!

It went survival mode there for a while. It was a lot, but we did it and everything went great. I was pretty proud that the ball didn't get dropped anywhere. I thought for sure that something or someone would have been forgotten somewhere, but everything was done.
I only had a couple anxiety attacks, a few sleepless nights and some tears, but it's all over and I feel a huge sense of relief.

I am so beyond excited for the month of November and just spending days with my kids, doing our day to day life and feeling some what normal and organized again. It was  a heck of a month. A lot of fun, a lot of stress and we totally rocked it!

Giving myself a high-five!

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Thank You Dan

Just a note.
This month has been absolutely insane for me. I have never been pulled in so many different directions and needed to be in so many different places. It's kinda been crazy. I'll blog about it later. But first I have to make a note to thank my incredibly amazing husband for all he has done this month for me.
   I have been gone so much and nights have been mostly on him. He always does such an amazing job as a father and husband, but he really really took care of EVERYTHING and more. He kept things running at home when I couldn't. The house never fell apart. Laundry was done, kids were always fed and he never complained. Not once. All while still kicking butt at work and being mr. boss man.  He literally helped me with so many things. Early in the morning and late at night, running errands and keeping track of all that needed to be done. He is always there for me and never grew tired of my complaints, my tears, and anxiety attacks. He encouraged and praised and just continued to be by my side through all the craziness. I am extremely lucky to call him my husband. To have such a man that I get to call mine forever is truly amazing. I don't deserve him. I really don't. I'm just glad that he still sticks around even with all my crazy that I bring into our marriage. He is mine. He is my only one. He is my best friend and the only one who knows my deepest darkest fears, my secrets and my insecurities.
  I really can't ever thank him enough for keeping me afloat this month.

 I love you Dan. Truly, thank you for just being you this month.
Oh how I love you.

Owen's 3rd Birthday

We had a great time celebrating Owen's birthday this year. We celebrated and celebrated some more! 

We of course started the night before with new pajamas. I had a MCO choir performance that night so Dan gave them to him. I was so glad to make it home though before he went to bed. I wanted to put my two year old to bed for the last time. 

The next morning we were up bright and early. Owen was pretty excited to get his birthday started. He knew what was coming his way since we had just celebrated June's birthday.
He wanted to start the day with cartoons and candy. So cartoons and candy he got. 

We enjoyed a quiet morning and then got ready for his birthday party with friends. 

Daddy surprised us all by coming to Owen's birthday party. It was such a fun surprise!! We love having daddy around so it was great!! 

All Owen wanted for his birthday party was a piƱata. It's been sitting in our house for a while, so he was excited to finally get to hit it!

After the birthday party we headed home and played all afternoon. We then headed to dinner at our usual birthday restaurant, Rain Forest Cafe. It's our 4th annual birthday dinner there. 

When we got to our table Owen was pretty scared of the whole place. It's how he was last year too. It didn't help that he fell asleep on the way over so being a bit tired made for a really scared little boy. 

Thanks to daddy he calmed his nerves and we were able to enjoy his birthday dinner. 

Kate was a gem the entire time 

After dinner we headed home to open gifts and have his birthday cake. 

He got a caterpillar that moves with the direction thats on his body. You can take it apart and rearrange it so the caterpillar goes in different directions. It's pretty cool and one of Owen's favorite toys from his birthday. 

We sang and had some ice cream cake. 

It was a great little birthday and we had fun celebrating! We truly love this little boy!! 

Happy Birthday little man! 

Monday, October 24, 2016

Owen at 3 Birthday Questions

What is your name? Owen 
How old are you? I don't know? One? Two? Three? 
What is today? IT'S MY BIRTHDAY!!!! 
What is your favorite color? Blue or Orange
What is your favorite animal? Dinosaurs and fishes 
What is your favorite book? The Halloween kid
What is your favorite TV show? Story Bots (He also loves Blaze and Paw Patrol)
What is your favorite movie? Big Hero 6, Minions and Topia (Zootopia)
What is your favorite song? Twinkle Twinkle Little Star 
What is your favorite food? Sandwiches, peanut butter. 
What is your favorite snack? Fruit Snacks
What is your favorite toy?  My big Dino Trux  
What is your favorite game? Cooties 
Who is your best friend? Max (Max Donaldson from Church)
What is your favorite thing to do outside? Play in the sandbox
What do you want to be when you grow up? I don't know. Who's that? 
What did you do on your birthday… what have you done today? I don't know, I just want Candy
Who did you celebrate your birthday with? Max and daddy came to my birthday party!
Anything else you would like to say? No 
Blow a kiss? No, Can I have my candy now? 

 Happy Birthday Owen 

Owen at 3!

Dear Owen, OD, buddy boy, Otis, 
Happy Happy birthday buddy! Today you are three years old. I can't lie and say I'm so sad that you are a year older. In all honesty we are all pretty excited to get out of the terrible two's. Hahaha Oh sweetheart we love you so so so much, but man you are a beast! You are such an independent little thing and if things don't go your way you show it. 
You really are such a stud though. You truly have a gentle side to you, especially when it comes to your baby sister Kate. Owen, you love her. You are so sweet with her and are always concerned about her well being. You have such strong emotions and you are just learning what they all mean. 
You are a big boy! 

You are wearing 3T clothes and you are just solid. Your hands and feet are a rock. You potty trained twice this year which was great fun, but you really really hate to poop. I know that someday down the road you are going to be sooooooo embarrassed that this is in our blog book. I'm sorry son, but right now it's our biggest challenge. You really hate it. You don't take naps anymore, but you sometimes fall asleep in the car and you then will take a nap. It just depends on the day. We cut out your naps due to your night terrors and it somewhat helped. You haven't had one until recently. Just the other night you had one and its so hard to watch you and not be able to comfort you, no matter how hard we try. 

You love to read and look at books, sing songs and LOVE playing with puzzles. You would do puzzles all day long. And not those little toddler puzzles. We are talking like 24 and higher count puzzles. You love playing with cars and helicopters but your favorite toy right now to play with is your big Dino Trux. It has a wrecking ball on the end of it, so you love to build towers and then knock it down. You do that over and over again. 

You are talking like a champ and learn more and more vocabulary all the time. You know all your shapes, numbers up to 10 and can recognize the majority of the alphabet. Including singing the whole alphabet. You love singing that to Kate. You love playing tag and hide n' seek and really anything with running or jumping involved. 

You absolutely LOVE to snuggle. You are the best little buddy to snuggle and sleep with. When you do sleep, you sleep like a rock and you don't move. I don't mind sleeping next  to you. 
Every night after saying prayers and reading stories we have a good cuddle. You curl up into this tiny ball and get as close as you can to me or your daddy. It's my favorite thing to do and I so look forward to it especially after a tough day. It's our little bonding time and I'm grateful that no matter what the day was like we get to cuddle. 

You love to eat Vega's and fruits. You would eat Broccoli all day long and you would eat apple sticks right beside it. If you had it your way you would have broccoli, apples, crackers and candy for every meal. Oh boy you are so addicted to candy. That stuff can make you do anything! hahaha You don't realize it now, but someday you will see how much I used an m&m as a bargaining tool. Bad parenting? Maybe. But it works!! 

You're still attached to your blanket as ever. It's a love hate relationship we have with this blanket of yours, but I can't make you get rid of it. The security of it is there. So I'm not going to deprive you of it. Will you go to college with it?! Maybe! I did. Haha. 

Buddy you are so awesome, you are so funny and you have the most contagious laugh. You can melt my heart in a matter of seconds with your "I love you mommy" and your tight hugs. You give really good hugs. 

You are so independent. It drives me crazy with how you have to do everything on your own, but you are so determined to conquer this world, that who am I to stop you. 

So Owen there you have it. You at three. There is so much that I just can't write down. So many feelings and emotions that I simple can't put into words. All I know is that I love you to the infinities and back. I love you for who  you are and who you are trying to become. 
Thanks for letting me be your mom!
I sure love you kiddo.
Happy Third birthday sweetheart!!

Love, Mom 

Sunday, October 23, 2016

June's 5th Birthday Celebration

June is five! And we partied celebrating this little lady. Five is big year. I don't know why but to me it represents the transition from toddler to child. June is officially a little girl. 

We started the night before with special pajamas to sleep in. A family tradition to get new PJ's the night before their birthdays. 

That night Dan and I decorated the house and got ready for her birthday the next day. 

When everyone woke up we started off with special pancakes with whipped cream and sprinkles. 

Daddy got fancy, pulled out the food coloring and starting making all sorts of different pancakes. 

All of us got ready and then we took June to school. Dan had the day off so we went to yoga then prepped for June's birthday. Getting the cake and balloons and getting last minute birthday stuff. The day was non stop! 
We went and picked June up from school, where they had celebrated her birthday there with Hello Kitty cupcakes that we had brought. 
June came home and was welcomed with balloons and her presents. She wanted to open them right then and there!

So thats exactly what we did! 

June got StarLily. This magical unicorn that comes to life and learns from their owner. June is in love. I find it a little creepy. 

After presents we pulled out her cake. Ice cream cake is what she wanted this year, and then we sang to her. 

After we had cake and ice cream we told June what her special birthday plans were for that night. We told her that we got a babysitter for the younger two and that she would have a special night out with just mom and dad. She was so excited!!

We got June a matching outfit with her American girl Doll. She wanted Star Lily in the picture as well. 

First we went to the American girl doll store and had Kit's ears pierced. We then went down to the store and let June pick out one outfit for kit. 

Once she finally decided on an outfit we headed out and got ready to go get June's ears pierced. 
June has been asking to get her ears pierced for a while now, but we have a rule that she had to wait until she turned five, so she could fully understand what was happening. She was so so excited to finally be getting them pierced. She wasn't nervous at all! 

Then three two one happened and the left ear got pierced first. 

We had tears. The girl piercing her ears did so great though. She gave June a sucker and then quickly moved on to the next ear, not giving June the chance to re-think her decision. Before June knew it, the right ear was pierced. 

Daddy instantly made her giggle and it was all smiles from then on. 

She loves them. She was excited to pick out what earrings she would wear next once she is able to take out the first pair. 

After the mall we headed to June's favorite restaurant. Benihana. She loves watching them cook in front of her. 

She also loves using chop sticks. She tried for as long as she could to eat with them. It took her so long for each bite so we finally suggested to use a fork. Haha she would have stayed all night though to use those chopsticks.  

We sang "Happy Birthday" to June one more time that night and headed home. 

She was out cold when we pulled into the driveway. It was a pretty go go go day. We loved celebrating her turning five though and it was such a special time to just have her be with mom and dad. 

That Saturday we celebrated her birthday party with friends. It was so crazy planning this party. I had a pizza place reserved for weeks and then four days before June's birthday party, they called and said that they went out of business the day before. Just like that. No warning, nothing. So I had to scramble and June really wanted it to be at this type of pizza place, so thankfully Chuck E Cheese pulled through for us and we had her party there. It turned out great!! 

The kids got to go in the SCREAM booth. Which freaked some kids out, and the rest of us didn't understand. Haha. But they screamed as loud as they could. The louder they screamed the more tickets they got. 

I love this picture. June is such a genuine happy child. 

We played games to our hearts content and then called it a day for June's birthday. 

It  was so much fun celebrating with her. I truly love birthdays. I feel children get short changed sometimes because people always say "Your a kid, everyday is a holiday for you" but in reality it's not. They have to share toys, attention, time.  They have to do chores, so on and so forth. I whole heartedly agree that those things are important. It's that stuff that makes them not be selfish brats. But I also feel strongly that children need that special "me" moments as well. Birthdays are the perfect way to celebrate just them. I hope I remember that. I hope my children always feel extra special on their birthdays. 

One last happy birthday June! 
Love you to the moon and back.