Friday, September 17, 2010

Quote for the Day

Olivia: "Sometimes I think that our family is... you know... not entirely normal."

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Connor's Nighttime Adventure

He looks all sweet and innocent, doesn't he?

We're just not sure anymore.

A couple of weeks ago, we bought Connor a toddler bed.  Since his crib will have a new occupant sooner rather than later, it has become vital that we move Connor out of the crib and into a new bed.  We found a great deal on Craigslist and brought it home, and the next morning Connor and the girls played with the new bed.  The picture above was taken that day - Kelsey had put every single stuffed animal she could find into the bed and Connor thought it was the best thing ever!

We have had mostly success with him in his "big boy bed".  He's still fussing for a few minutes when we put him down at night (he's been doing this for months!) but generally he'd stay in the bed.  There was a couple times he didn't, so he'd get moved back into the crib, but as I said - overall it's been a success.

Yesterday Connor went down for his nap with (gasp!) enthusiasm.  He climbed into bed himself, said "night-night" to me, and I walked out of the room.  No tears, no whining.  Fabulous.  Could he keep this up at bedtime?  Sure enough, he walked down the hall with Daddy, blew kisses to me, and got straight into bed.  Perfect night, right?

Fast forward to 1:00 a.m.  I heard Connor over the baby monitor.  I heard him stir a little and then immediately let out a cry.  So into his room I went to check on him and make sure he was okay.  I looked in the bed, but he wasn't there.  Huh?  Where could he be?  I looked around the room, and there he was - sitting on top of the changing table.

Ben thinks he might be a sleepwalker.

I think he played around before falling asleep in the first place.

Either way, he obviously woke up on top of the changing table and was confused.  Needless to say he spent the rest of his night in the crib.

We're going to have to keep our eye on this one.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

I Don't Snore

Every night I sing to my kids at bedtime.  They all have their favorite song, which I sing every night - even Connor. Olivia's is "Mother, Tell Me A Story"; Connor's is "I Am a Child of God"; and Kelsey's is "Jesus Loves Me".

Tonight I went in to sing to the girls when I got home from grocery shopping.  They had already been in bed a few minutes and were feeling a little goofy.  I sang to Olivia, then went over to Kelsey's bed where she was pretending to be asleep by snoring loudly.  Then she opened her little devil-eyes, looked at me oh-so-sweetly, and said, "Mommy, that's what you sound like when you're asleep."

Ha!  I don't snore.  Much.  So as I was singing her special song to her, I felt the inclination to change it just a little.  Here's the song Kelsey got tonight:

Jesus loves me, this I know,
For the Bible tells me so.
But if you pick on your mom 'cause she snores,
He won't love you anymore.

Needless to say, the ensuing laughter and requests for a repeat performance were NOT conducive to sleepy-time.  Guess I should have thought that one out a little better.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Red Rock Canyon

This past Sunday the family discussed what we wanted to do with our Labor Day Holiday.  The kids voted for the Wichita Mountains Federal Wildlife Reserve down near Lawton.  (If you want to see pictures from our last trip, click here.)  The down side of that idea was that it's a 2-hour drive down there, and another 2 hours back.  We (meaning me and Ben) wanted to make this a morning outing, since we had other things that we wanted to do - including relax.  So I looked for something closer that would give us some good scenery and a nice, yet very easy hike.  I am 7 1/2 months pregnant after all, and Connor is 2.

The result: Red Rock Canyon State Park.  It was just an hour away, so we headed out at 9am, stayed an hour and a half, ate lunch in the car on the way back, and got home at 12:30.  Perfect timing for Connor (and me!) to go down for a nap.

Here's a few pics of our day:

~The girls playing on the big climbing rocks at the playground.  There was a ledge about 4 feet off the ground that they eventually started jumping off of.  What daredevils we have!~

~After the playground we followed a little trail between the campgrounds that took us along the bottom wall of the canyon.  It was a nice, shady walk with some really cool things to see.  I've never seen a tree growing out of a rock wall like this before, have you?~

~When we got back to the picnic/playground area we noticed a line of ants across the path and decided to follow it to see if we could find the ant hill, or even their destination.  We followed it as far as we could, and still never found the beginning or the end.  The line stretched over 20 feet before we gave up!  It disappeared into the forest and we lost the other end in the grass.~

~Eventually we made our way over to the California Road Nature Trail for our "hike".~

~Fortunately they provided a handrail for the steepest part.~

~Once we got to the top of the canyon, we were walking mostly on rock - much to the girls' delight.~

~Now I know where all the red dirt around here comes from.~

~Somewhere along the way we found this dying bush in the middle of the path.  Kelsey noticed this funky-looking growth all over the leaves.  Fungus, maybe?  We've never seen anything like it.~

~And, some general pretty scenery from the top of the canyon.~

~On the way out we made a pit-stop at one of the newer-looking restrooms at the park, which was near the repelling area.  These pictures give you a good idea of how high the canyon walls were.  Nothing huge, but pretty regardless.  And definitely different scenery than what we have around here in Edmond, which is what we were after to begin with!~

Monday, September 6, 2010

My Missionary Mom

For those of you who don't know, my mother's dream in life for the past few years has been to retire from teaching and serve a full-time mission for our church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  Since she was retiring this year in June, she started filling out her paperwork in the spring.  It took her a little longer to get the paperwork ready than expected (she's a teacher, people - she was busy!) so she didn't get her paperwork mailed out to Salt Lake City until near the end of June.

Five weeks later at the end of July she got The Letter.  And for any of you who don't understand about The Letter, you need to know that in our church the missionary assignments are made without consulting the missionary applicant.  The missionary department receives the application and assignments are made based on worldwide need and where the leaders of the church feel inspired to send that missionary.  Then a letter is sent out to the missionary and when they receive it they open it up and find out where they are going.  My mother had applied to serve an 18-month mission, and got her mission call to the Riverside California Mission to serve in the mission office.  She had to report to the Missionary Training Center (MTC) in Provo, Utah on August 23rd - which was only three and a half weeks away.

Fortunately, she had already moved out of her apartment, put most of her things in storage, and had been visiting family in New York for the past few weeks.  She had a few things left to do, and was ready to go a week later.  She spent about a week with my brother's family in Louisiana, then headed up here to Oklahoma for another week-long visit. After us, she was heading out to Orem, UT to spend the weekend with my younger brother's family before going into the MTC.

Since it was such a long drive from Oklahoma to Utah, my mom asked me if I would be willing to drive with her to my brother's house in Orem if she would fly me back.  Of course I would!  And fortunately, my fabulous husband was willing to take time off work to stay with the kids and let me run off with my mom for a few days.  I somehow didn't take a single picture during her whole entire week with us, but I came to my senses on Thursday morning before we left and got a couple of pictures on Thursday and Friday.

~Mom with the kids the morning we left~

~Me and Mom at a rest stop in Texas, posing in front of a metal statue of a longhorn~

~Me and mom in front of our motel room door in Grants, AZ.  We stayed in the cheapest motel we could find - $32/night - and trust me... you could tell.  At least it was clean.  Relatively.  And yes, I know my eyes are closed.  The flash was bright and it was dark outside.~

~Some of the New Mexico, Colorado, and Utah scenery~

~And, finally, some pictures of my crazy brother and his lovely wife~

~My cousin, Natalie, with her husband and adorable girls~

It was such a wonderful trip for me and my mom!  And as a bonus, I got to meet some new members of my family - baby Jackson (Danny & Jessica's son) as well as Natalie's husband and kids - and even an old friend that I really didn't expect to see!  It was great to hang out, even if just for a few minutes, Amy.

Despite my claustrophobia in the Orem, Provo, and SLC area, I would love to get back out there again with my family and spend some real time with these people.  If only I had Scotty at my disposal (beam me up!) I would be there next week.  As it is... we'll have to see, won't we?

And my Missionary Mom?  She has now spent her time at the MTC and made it safely to to Riverside, CA where she'll spend the next 18 months as a missionary.  We're proud of you, Mom/Grandma Crews!