Sunday, April 27, 2008

Too old to be young, Too young to be old!


This week, I've had motivation to get out and do things. One thing I've been wanting to do is play basketball. I haven't quite figured out how to do this with kids, so it has actually been 2 or 3 years since I have played the sport I love. I scheduled the gym at the church, left the kids at home with Ben and sent out an email to the "young" (couples we call who are in their early 20's)people, and then to some others who I thought would be interested.

Let me just tell you, everyone who came had a blast! There was me,myself, and I. There are really only a handful "young" people ward and Friday is probably a date night for them. Most of the ward(church members) are older than us and I bet they just don't play basketball. I even thought of joining a team at the recreation center, but they play on Sundays. I thought to myself, "This is why people choose to run for exercise. You don't need a team." Unfortunately for me, all of the sports I like to play are team sports. I tried a couple months ago to get people to play ultimate frisbee and could only get 6. Maybe I should try recruiting at a single's ward.

Here's what's going on with the family:

Ben was just called as the ward mission leader and will be released from his all time favorite calling, Gospel Doctrine teacher. His calling includes lots,and lots of meetings. I'm sure he will do great!

CJ is getting ready to take the "Star" test (end of the year test) this week and went to a workshop on Saturday to help prepare her. She told us she was nervous about it, but we reassured her that she will do great. Ben said it's really a test for the teachers.

Mia has been waking up in the middle of the night by herself and has been dry on a couple occasions. This is a great success for her and we sure let her know that it is.

Xander finally has enough hair that I can spike up with gel. He looked so handsome in his tie and vest today, decorated with a stuffed animal monkey around his neck and topped off with a beaded neck less around his neck. His favorite thing to eat is cereal with milk and bends his arms and shakes them with excitement when you give it to him. He always request "A bowl" to eat his food in.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Mr. Mom

With everything that has happened to Val lately, I've tried to let her rest and recoup. That means I did a lot of the stuff she usually does, and let me tell you, It would take three of me to do what she does alone!

To avoid boring you with the specifics, let's just say I tried to take care of the kids whenever I was home from work,(including all night - every night), I read more books to them, walked with them, took them on errands, etc. I usually do all that stuff, but this week I did it more. I think the kids are finally getting used to me.

All week long, I dealt with each of the kids crying for their Mother. Xander and Mia were so mad at me at times that they would just scream "MOM! MOM! MOM"! Val would poke her head in and they would immediately calm down. I thought I had finally won Xander over today in the van. He was very tired and throwing a tantrum. I tried and tried to calm him down. I sang him songs, played peek-a-boo with him, told him stories. Nothing worked. I decided to give him some gummi bears. He stopped crying immediatly, ate it and with a huge smile, he looked at me and said "Thank you Mommy".


Even though I can't be half the mom Val is, the kids and I have a great time anyway, and they amaze me with the way they think. Mia had a stomach ache the other day and told us she had a "shark pain" (sharp pain). I thought that she just miss heard the words, but when we were watching Discovery channel and saw some sharks, she said "Dad! Shark Pains! In my belly!" So I guess she thinks belly aches are actually caused by sharks in there. Another thing about her, when she gets ready to cross the road, she looks both ways and waves at the cars (or lack thereof) in each direction. We just thought it was her friendliness until we realized she's "looking both waves".

Here are some cute pictures (or rather, pictures of cute kids). Thats one of the things I did for Val too - take pictures.

This first one shows a couple of toys I snagged from the trash. 2 Radio control cars. The Mustang is almost big enough for Moo to drive!

CJ's finally growing her teeth in!

Cool Xander

Mia's got to get prepared to eat otter pops! Hey her hands get cold.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Firemen are our friends!

This weekend, as most of you know already, I got to ride in an ambulance. Yes, I am now a member of the ambulance club. In order to be in this club, you have to actually be lying on the stretcher and can't just be an observer. Having an IV helps towards gold membership. I think what guarantees your gold membership is having the sirens on all the way to the hospital, which I did not. I had something better. I had the paramedics singing "Vanilla Ice" and doing interpretations of rappers. At my request, no country was allowed and they pumped up "Sublime" for me on our trip to the hospital.

It was the least they could do. At least 7 of them, tromped into our tiny apartment to see me lying on the floor in my underwear after losing alot of blood. When I asked for pants, they replied,"No" because the hospital would be taking them off anyway. I was granted blankets, thank goodness, on the way out to the ambulance.

Mia was such a trooper. All day she was sick with a fever and was just not feeling good. Ben contributes her lack of energy towards her good behavior. She was awesome. Ben asked how she was doing, and she replied, "Firemen are our friends." We have had many fire drills living in this complex and it has just been recently that the sirens and alarms don't send Mia into a screaming fit.

Ben's performance during this emergency was fitting for a gold medal. He did what any boy would do. . .he called his mom! Well, not any mom. His just happens to be a nurse. A nurse who usually does our triage for us. Ben called 911 and found someone to watch the kids. In my light headed state, I was trying to think of some friends he could call, but they wheeled me out before I could help him.

The Bishop of our ward(our church) just happened to call Ben during all of this and ended up being the one to watch our kids. We thought it a fitting initiation since he was just called last week. His wife later helped during the night and the missionaries even stopped by unexpectedly.

There are times when I have to say to CJ,"Let me be the mom!" This night was not one of them. We relied on her in so many ways. She helped Mia into a nighttime pantie because she wet the bed. She then, let Mia sleep in her bed. She helped Xander find his binky and to not be scared of our visitors. Then, successfully, put him to bed after calming him down. She stayed up until Ben came home around 1:00a.m. and slept on the floor. Yes, this girl deserved a gold medal too! Instead, she got a "Highschool Musical 2" purse, bracelet, and "Hannah Montana" headbands for her help.

Our ward family here has helped us so much. I ended up staying overnight at the hospital after my Dilation and Curettage (not to be confused with D&C) and Ben went home to relieve the Bishop's wife. People kept bringing us food(to Ben's delight)the next day,and friends took Mia and CJ so they wouldn't be stuck at home all day.

In the meantime, Ben was taking care of our car, which had been a victim of vandalism and had its window broken. This had been the 3rd time, since we have lived here, that our car had been damaged and left with no note or anything showing some one's conscience. The person fixing the glass was awesome and even offered, free of charge, to take one of the giant dents out. That just made my day!

We feel so blessed of all the help we have received. In fact, I am still getting help with my kids,even today someone took Mia and Xander for 3 hours so I could nap. My sweet friends keep bringing me dinner. Thanks for your prayers and all of your support! For Ben, I will say, "Thank you for all the food and even though Valerie said we didn't need it, you brought it anyway!"

Friday, April 11, 2008

Ben is the man!

Ben has performance reviews periodically where he sits down with the big wigs (director, supervisors etc.) and shows what he has been working on. I hope he doesn't mind if I share his past performance review with you. He was nervous because what he had to show wasn't his best because of delays in the "pipeline". Everything ended working out, like it always does. His performance review was awesome. They were so impressed with him and his supervisor told him he would do all that he could to keep him on full-time (Ben correct me if I am wrong with any of this). They also brought up something that he did during his internship. An assignment where he went above and beyond. The fact that they remembered something from his internship was awesome.

I am so proud of Ben. He is so talented, smart, dependable and good at what he does. Hopefully, Ben is making himself indispensable in Pixar's eyes and they will have no choice but to keep Ben FOR-EV-ER! That would make us so happy.

Oh what the heck!

I debated on whether or not to blog about this, but, oh what the heck! With the recent events that have occurred this week(if you don't figure it out from this blog, email me)My feelings have been jumbled and yet,it hasn't been hard to have a positive outlook and just move forward. Lately, I've been depressed off and on and I just feel blessed this hasn't sent me down depression lane.

In the next couple months, there are 2 occasions that I can get dressed up and I wasn't looking forward to it in my previous state, but now, I have set a goal and feel excited. Ben has a party at Pixar where they celebrate the completion of a movie with tuxedos and beautiful fancy dresses in May. Then in June, my brother gets married. This is my third sibling to get married and would have been the third sibling's wedding where I would have been plump and juicy in the pictures. You see where I am going with this?

I admit that I like watching the Biggest Loser on TV. If, in a state of hormonal unheaval, I may be known to shed a tear. I love watching overweight people change their lives and look awesome. It's motivated me and I am even motivated to start running again! Two months may not be enough time to lose my ideal amount of weight, but it will be enough time to help me feel good about myself. And, that is all want!

Saturday, April 5, 2008

San Francisco

San Francisco is probably one of the neatest cities I have ever been to. No other city makes me smile and feel so happy as San Francisco does. The crazy city life and heavy traffic doesn't even damper my spirits. It's just a fun city. We decided to make a trip to Golden Gate Park. We've gone once before with my mom and sister but only hit a small part. Today we went to the tip of the park near the ocean.
The windmill area was beautiful. The tulips added a special Dutch feeling to the surroundings.

We stopped and ate lunch at Spreckles Lake and watch people launch their remote controlled boats. The kids loved watching.

We had such a fun day in a fun city!

Friday, April 4, 2008

It's the Little Things


Since staying at home and just being a Mom, I find myself looking for little projects to do in my little free moments throughout the day. This past week I started a preschool for Mia. I used to just teach Mia at home and do some fun things with her. Lately, I've really wanted some more social interaction for her and thought doing a preschool would be a great idea. I have a hard time accepting some of the "preschools" that are around. I find most of them are like a daycare and playtime and I can provide those things for her without spending money to do it. While the "preschools" may lack academic substance, they definitely have the social interaction on their side.

So I have 5 little people that I teach on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9-12. I get so excited planning fun activities and teaching. Mia is having fun too even though she is the only girl. I have to say, she is the best student in my class. Of course, I don't show favoritism. What kind of teacher do you think I am? You can click on the link to the preschool on the right side bar and check out what we are doing.

This little thing inside me makes me so tired these days. I have to take a nap when Xander goes down just so I can make it through the day. I haven't thrown up yet and I don't think it is going to happen either. I almost don't feel nausea either. This baby just maybe perfect! As for the rest of my body, I sure feel pregnant. Some women are blessed with little strawberries or maybe little oranges, I unfortunately have grapefruits and when I am pregnant they become cantaloupes. (Sorry male species if you had to read that, it's just the truth!)

My kids are little blessings. Xander can now successfully open the front door and takes off any chance he can get. We don't have doorknobs but rather a handle that you pull down on. The front door locks, but when you open it on the inside it just automatically opens. CJ has lost both of her two front teeth and I love listening and watching her talk. It is so cute. Mia is writing letters all the time and I taught her her first sight word, "the". She pronounces it "duh" but all the same, she is excited to read a word.