Thursday, August 27

Annalee's 7!!!

Annalee turned 7-years-old on August 24th. I'm really beginning to realize how fast time goes by and how much I need to cherish these times. It was quite the ordeal bringing Annalee into this world, but the trial that came with her birth makes me appreciate that I've been given the opportunity to be in her life. She is our little guinea pig that experiences all of Mom and Dad's countless mistakes that occur with parenting and therefore puts up with
A LOT! She is sensitive, energetic, feisty, musical, talkative, anxious, intelligent, artsy, loving, etc. all wrapped up into one. She really is a whirl wind of energy that makes all of our lives more meaningful.

The one thing that Annalee wanted to do for her 7th Birthday is go to Build-A-Bear. She's been talking about doing this for the past year. She also insisted that Cambry be able to get one too. We were reluctant because of the prices but the experience was fun and memorable.

Grandma came along for the ride and made it even more fun! Annalee has a very special bond with her namesake.

Annalee ended up with a Hannah Montana bear, and Cambry of course picked a pink bear accesorised with Ruby Red slippers...we wouldn't expect anything else.

We finished off this two day birthday event with a family party with, of course, a Hannah Montana cake that Annalee picked out cool!!! She got Legos for her birthday and her older boy cousins were so cute at showing her how to put them together!!! It was a fun day.

Wednesday, June 24

Cheryl Gave In

and this is why...

With my sister and her kids visiting us tonight, we swam, bbq'd had root beer floats and then finished off the night with s'mores. I guess the pressure was too much for her.

Visits like today is what summer is all about.

Saturday, June 20

A girl's best friend.....

While having a little campfire tonight I was amazed to watch our girls down the s'mores! They even asked for not only seconds, but thirds (which were not allowed)! Therefore I've come to the conclusion that clothing, shoes, and not even diamonds are a girl's best friend...."Chocolate is truly a girl's best friend." Unfortunately, I haven't allowed my "best friend" to have a part in my life over a month but sure have enjoyed watching my girls, AND HUBBY, indulge in it. Here's a picture of the girls enjoying a chocolate milkshake at Arby's which was given to them for free by a worker. That made their day!

The chocolate addiction starts at a young age in our family. Here's a picture of pookey bear getting free reign with a homemade chocolate chip cookie. I think the smile says it all!

Thursday, April 23

Awesome Cherry Blossoms

I just wanted to share a photo of our ornamental (fruitless) cherry tree in full bloom (a little past its prime). The variety is a Yoshino Cherry, sometimes called the Japanese Flowering Cherry (Prunus x yedoensis). It is the same variety that makes the Washington D.C. cherry blossoms famous (along with the Kwanzan Cherry).

It's no where near it's potential full size of 40-50 feet, but it is really becoming a beautiful tree. I'm glad we spent a little extra money four summers ago to get this show piece.

Click here for a link to's page on this tree.

Wednesday, March 25

Farwell Grandma Smith 1908-2009

Today my wonderful Grandma Relia Cooley Smith passed away at 101-years-old. I began to think that this day would never come but here it is. She lived such an amazing life and was loved by so many. I can't help but imagine the joyous reunion she's having with family that has already passed on. Especially the reunion with her sweet husband Jay who she lost over 20-years ago, and her daughter Sandy who passed away this year. I'm so thankful for her example in my life and how caring and loving she was to me and everyone around her.

Events and milestones of 1908.
January 1 - 1st time, ball signifying new year dropped at Times Square
January 6 - Relia Cooley Smith was born
January 11 - Grand Canyon National Monument is designated
January 24 - Robert Baden-Powell begins the Boy Scout movement
March 22 - Louis L'Amour, American author born
April 5 - Bette Davis, American actress born
May 10 - Mother's Day is observed for the first time
May 14 - 1st passenger flight in an airplane
June 12 - Lusitania crosses Atlantic in record 4 days 15 hours, New York City
June 24 - Grover Cleveland, 22nd and 24th President of the United States died
June 30 - Boston's Cy Young's 2nd no-hitter, beats New York Highlanders, 8-0
July 13 - 4th modern Olympic games opens in London
September 16 - Carriage-maker, William Durant, founded General Motors Corp
September 27 - Henry Ford produces his first Model T automobile (sells for $850)
October 14 - The Chicago Cubs win the World Series. They have failed to do so ever since
October 24 - Billy Murray hits the charts with "Take Me Out to the Ball Game"
November 3 - U.S. presidential election, Republican William Howard Taft defeats Democrat William Jennings Bryan
November 6 - Western bandits Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid are supposedly killed in Bolivia
December 31 - Wilbur Wright made a record flight of 2 hours, 20 minutes

Other things to note.
Petroleum production begins in the Middle East
There were 46 states, New Mexico and Arizona were still territories
U.S. population: 88.7 Million
Dow Jones closes at 86.15 on 12/31/08, up 46.6% in one year.

First Class postage stamp: $0.02
Four operating LDS temples, St. George, Logan, Manti and Salt Lake
Joseph F. Smith, president of the LDS Church

It's the Little Things....

It seems that my blogging is like feast or famine, but right now I'm probably being a little too plentiful but I had to write about what happened this morning. For no particular reason I was having a pity party for myself last night and was just frustrated about a lot of minuscule things. It caused a little dissension between Tyler and I so of course I went to bed angry and did not sleep well. I woke up later than usual and quickly told Annie to go grab a banana while I jumped in the shower and then I'd be down to feed them all breakfast. Annie had no clue of my frustrations from the previous night. After quickly showering, I ran downstairs and saw that breakfast was already placed perfectly on the table. There were three bowls of cereal (with the milk poured in), a yogurt for each of us, a graham cracker for dipping, and drinks poured in mugs. She even gave me the cereal and drink that I prefer because she knew I wasn't a big Fruit Loops fan.
All of the sudden everything I was frustrated with disappeared and my heart melted. What a thoughtful gesture...even if my Corn Flakes were a little soggy. I've heard that the 6-8 years old stage is called the "good girl/good boy" stage and I think there's some truth to that. My sister-in-law stated the other evening that it's because they're preparing for a special event that takes place when they turn eight. The more I've pondered that I totally agree. I've noticed that Annie isn't as loud lately and seems to be internally pondering things more, she's always the one that reminds us to pray and hounds on Cambry if she eats before the prayer, and she's very sensitive to others' around her and quick to cry and defend others. I've noticed these qualities in her friends whom are also this age. I think it's part of their preparation for the special event that will take place on their 8th birthday. Anyways, I'm grateful that Annie was able to turn my mood around this morning. I think that our children are more perceptive to our moods and needs than we realize.

Monday, March 23

More Pictures of Cambry's Birthday!


Annie's been learning typing in school these past couple of weeks. So, while I was blogging tonight she begged me to let her type something for Cambry's Birthday in Word. I finally gave in and this is what Annie came up with all by herself. Please don't pay attention to the grammar because she's only in 1st grade.

Dear Cambry,

We love you double triple!!!!Theres how much we love you.Oh, and by the way, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! I,m so glad that its your birthday!But sadly, you cant stay 3 forever.You half to turn 4.We will love you in our hearts forever and ever and always. We proudy apereciate you forever with much proudness in our hearts. We will love you forever.

TO Cambry LOVE Annie Mom Dad and Heidi.




I see a Princess shining in your eyes darling girl!!!!

Cambry is four!

We are a little sad today because our little three-year-old is now the BIG 4!!! Of course this is Cambry just posing...she's ecstatic that it's her Birthday.

It's been a weekend full of celebrating for this little one. Being the middle child sometimes we feel that Cambry gets left out because she's not demanding and goes with the flow so we decided to throw her a "My Little Pony-Princess Party!" She had lots of fun little friends from the neighborhood over.

Most of them came dressed as Pretty Princess's but Annie insisted on being the Wicked Witch and couldn't wait to scare all the little Princesses!

We tried to do lots of fun activities like make Pony Puppets and play organized games, but in the end we realized that they all just wanted to play with each other and eat their treats and cupcakes. Rounding up a bunch of little girls can be quite the chore!!! However, they all did enjoy balloon parachuting and loved climbing under it.

Tyler took the day off which helped a bunch with watching our wild Heidi through it all. We also had help from my good friends Sandy, Heather, Tammi, and Sheryl (who was our talented photographer for the day). I couldn't have done it without them.
Here's a picture of Cambry with her cute friend Kara who just turned four the week before. They've been wonderful friends over the years.

Here's a picture of Cambry enjoying her cupcake.Thank you to all the moms and friends of Cambry who made her Birthday so special...she had a wonderful day!!

On Saturday we had a fun party with our family and Cambry continued to be spoiled!!!

I think that it's a difficult thing being the second oldest because I feel that they get neglected at times...especially when they're the second of three girls (and with the other two being high maintenance). However, Cambry has been an absolute delight and is always pretty laid back and quick to make us laugh and smile. We're still waiting for the terrible 3's to hit....but they haven't as of yet. Who knows, maybe the storm will arrive with the 4's..or maybe it's just the calm before the teenage years. Until then we love, and will always love our little Cambry and hope that she has a WONDERFUL BIRTHDAY!!!

Friday, March 20

Our "new" loft

Here's the original loft. Rough original size was ~20ftx~12.5ft. We couldn't find a configuration that didn't feel too cluttered.

The "new" loft. The rough floor size is now ~10.5ftx~12.5ft and will serve one primary purpose... family entertainment and relaxing.

The room feels larger than the dimensions mentioned above. The actual open space area is ~15ftx~14ft because of the railing and the setback where the hall and TV is.

The bedroom is not quite finished yet. The new wall, door and trim still need paint. The bedroom is smaller than the other three bedrooms by at least 15sq. ft. It is ~9.5ftx~12.5ft.

Monday, February 2

Sick.....AGAIN!!!! (UPDATED)

The girls went to the doctor, and the doctor said... Cheryl has strep, C has strep and H has an ear infection.

Woo hoo.

We are sick of being sick!!! Seriously, over the last two months Cambry has had strep twice! A week after that Annalee came down with some sort of sickness (probably strep) and had the fever and vomitting. Two days after that we all went to the Draper Temple open house. As we're walking up the stairs I felt like I was going to pass out and wondered why they didn't turn up the heat more in the was beautiful though! Of course, I was down and out for three days, and finally went and got some antibiotics and was diagnosed with Strep! It took me a good week to finally start feeling like myself. Yesterday, I was so happy because the sun was out and everyone was feeling well. We went to dinner at a friend's house which was a lot of fun, but soon realized that Heidi was running a high fever. Now it's Sunday, and we were gladly awoken this morning by not Heidi, but Cambry running to the toilet (of course not making it) frantically, and she is now laying on the couch with a rag on her head. She's claiming her ears hurt and is running ANOTHER fever in conjunction with Heidi. Now I'm wondering if the Pediatrician will give me a two for one deal! We should buy stock in Motrin and Tylenol.

I'm just frustrated because I try to keep a reasonably clean house, wash their hands, and give them their vitamins daily...but this winter has been a killer! I feel like I haven't been to church forever and am beginning to suffer from cabin fever. Spring, WHERE ARE YOU? It's a good thing we got the flu shot...I just wish they'd make a Strep shot too!

Sunday, January 25

"A" and Her Creativity

Q: What do you get when you mix three sheets of blank paper, a black marker and a very creative six-year-old girl?

A: A twelve page activity book complete with drawings of a ballerina, a church, a queen, a temple, a world, a "find the hidden animals", a "draw four favorites" and other fun quiet time activities that her sister "C" could color in while we watch Stake Conference.

We're think about creating a blog dedicated completely to A's drawings and creations. But that would be a full-time job in itself.

"A" said, "If your child would like an activity book, just call 801-642-4330." (Paypal or cookies are the only accepted methods of payment.)

Wednesday, January 7

Happy 101st Birthday Grandma!!

My Grandmother Smith just turned 101- years-old yesterday!! She's an amazing woman who's lived through some major historical events. I remember her telling me stories about living in Logan as a young child and riding her white horses with carriage into town. She was an amazing cook and has the kindest heart. I will never forget her pot roasts, mustard pickles, and shrimp salad..yummy! She also made the most amazing french toast. She raised three wonderful sons and one daughter. I'm so thankful for her and her example. I can't believe that she's lived so long and is still doing fairly well. Of course she has her good and bad days but that's expected at 101-year-old. I already feel like I have good and bad days!! I'm sure that the day she passes on she will be greatly missed but I can't help but imagine the reunion she will have with her husband and her son Frank, whom she lost at birth. What a happy moment that will be! Happy Birthday!!!!

This photo is six years old. The baby in the photo is A.

Monday, January 5

December was a Blurrrrrr...

Every year I tell myself that I want to relax and have a nice, laid back Christmas Vacation...unfortunately I don't think it exists!! It was a lot of fun though! Here's a quick run down of some family fun.

It seemed like we were in the kitchen a great deal making this or that for some family dinner or just making cookies for Santa.

Unfortunately during the cooking baby H was being a little neglected and got into a bit of a mess.

(The green beans are in her lap)

Christmas Eve was spent with Tyler's family which is a fun tradition. There's always lot of fun stories, songs sung in German, and performances by the little ones.

Christmas Day we just relaxed with our own little family which was a lot of fun just watching the kids play with their presents.

C was pretty excited getting her singing Belle doll!

H was content playing with the wrapping paper!

The following week Tyler took work off. We decided to stay home and just do some local fun activities. We went bowling, out to eat (too much), sledding, to a movie, and visited with friends and family.

Here's C enjoying Festival of Lights...we continue to love it every year!

Sledding was a blast! I'm amazed at how many times A would run up the hill...she didn't even seem winded. C on the other hand had to be dragged up EVERY time.

Overall, it was a great holiday but I'm more than ready for school to begin. Today I had to take A to the dentist and can I honestly say, I really do not like the dentist at all. They seem to lay you on such a guilt trip and make you feel like a lousy parent. Oh well, the fun had to end at some point and the dentist is definitely a party pooper!!