Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Three Little Ballerinas

I had all three of my girls in ballet for the first half of this year. They were not in the same class - at least most of the time - but they were in the same recital. Emilyanne started ballet a couple of years ago, and Elisabeth had been wanting to try ballet. Leilani needed some help with her grace and dance moves in her gymnastics, so we put them all into dance. It was probably a one time thing, because Leilani and Elisabeth were both promoted at gymnastics this summer, and the time and money involved is preventing them from doing dance any more. But it was fun while it lasted. I was able to get some portraits done while they were all dancing, and I love them!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Thistledown Pumpkin Patch 2011

We went to Thistledown Farm for our annual family pumpkin patch visit. The kids are getting bigger, but they are still willing to sit on the pumpkins for our traditional picture.
We were supposed to meet Grandma and Grandpa Bevans to ride the wagon out to the pumpkin patch, but they were a bit late, so the kids played in the hay maze while we waited.
This pose of Leilani's just looked funny to me with her feet up like that.
The kids had a good time playing while we waited. They liked being "eaten" by the monster as the went down the slide.
We rode on an open wagon this year instead of the covered wagon we have ridden in years past.
Grandma and Grandpa made it in time to ride with us...
They brought Jeff's kids with them too. The boys had a good time together. Although, I have decided that if you get a group of boys together, you are just asking for all sorts of things that girls wouldn't do. For instance, what girl has ever wanted to go to the bathroom in a field of pumpkins?! I guess boys want to mark their territory? :)

The kids picked bigger pumpkins this year.
Benjamin couldn't even carry his own pumpkin, and Leilani was having a hard time too!
While the pumpkins were being weighed and paid for, I took the kids to the corn maze. They did it pretty fast this year, runnning through it in under 10 minutes I would guess.

We had a good time as always. It was nice weather this year too! It is getting harder and harder to fit this trip into our schedule each year, but we are always glad we do it!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Primary Program

Yesterday was our Primary Program. It was nice, and I got all teary eyed as usual. It was especially bittersweet because it was Emily's last primary program. I am only going to have two kids in primary next year!! My kids are all growing up - faster than I would like. :) Emily was one of the two narrators, and she did a nice job. Elisabeth did a nice job too. And then there was Benjamin... He did a nice job, don't get me wrong, he is just a whole different species than my little girls. My girls sit up on the stand reverently, sing the songs nicely and say their parts perfectly. My son plays with the hymn books on his face and head, "gun fights" (using fingers) with his cousin and friend, makes dramatic arm and hand movements during the songs (but he knows all the words and sings them too), marches, etc. etc. I guess you would say he is just all boy!

I practiced their parts with them on the way to church, and every time he said his part to me he would use a funny voice or say it in a funny way. I had visions of this continuing in Sacrament Meeting, so I threatened him with his life - and not going to Grandma's house, which was by far more important to him than his life - if he did not just say it nice and loud and slow in a normal voice. He reluctantly agreed. When he got up to give his part, he looked out at the audience, gave a big deep sigh, and then said his part just as he promised. Alan and I were laughing, because we decided we could just read his mind at that point - going through all the possible ways he could say his part, and then just accepting with a big sigh that life would just be better if he made his mom happy and said it the boring way. (I asked him later why he gave a big sigh before he gave his part, and he answered, "I have to breathe before I can talk, Mom. So I took a breath and then talked." - with an implied, duh in his tone at the end.)

There was a point in time where I absolutely could not stand his behavior on the stand anymore. (He wasn't the worst behaved, but he was way beyond my expectations) I had been able to catch his eye before, and give him "the look" and have him settle down (after he cheerfully waved at me and saw that I wasn't smiling and waving back). And I had shown him my folded arms and had him settle down, but this time he wasn't looking at me at all. So, I told Alan I was going to go up there and sit in his chair with him on my lap and make him sit reverently. I decided I was going to count to five and then get up. Just as I said 4 to myself, both Sister Jean and Sister Bell leaned over to him and got him behaving again. So I stayed in my seat and decided that maybe that was a sign from the Lord that I needed to not make a scene during the program.

I love that little boy, and he really is a good kid, but he definitely proves to me that boys and girls are very different. I was proud of him for memorizing his part, and giving it nicely, and for learning all the verses of all the songs. I would just like him to contain his fun loving, cheerful exuberance for life a little bit when he is on the stand in Sacrament Meeting. Maybe next year...

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Benjamin Lost His First Tooth

Benjamin lost his first tooth last week. He was pretty excited! I'm not sure if he was more excited about the tooth fairy coming or showing everyone the hole in his mouth, but he was definitely excited! It was a pretty uneventful happening. He had been telling us he had a loose tooth for a while, and then he came up to me with a tooth in his hand and said it fell out in the entry way. My baby is growing up way too fast! :)

Sunday, October 16, 2011

From Blog to Print

I recently bought a coupon from Living Social for a company that will print up your blog in book form. I decided to try it on a whim. After all, I used to put a lot of time into blogging, and although it is a good family record and good way to keep in touch with people, who goes back and looks at the old blog entries?

I decided that based on the number of pages I would need to print out the whole blog, I would only do one year at a time. So I started with 2007 - which is when I started my blog. It was really easy to do. I just had to sign into my blog and tell them which dates I wanted to start and end with. I chose a cover style, and they did the rest. I let them randomly pick a picture for the cover, although I could have picked one if I wanted to do that. Then I ordered it and forgot about it. When it came in the mail, I was pleasantly surprised...I loved it! I had forgotten a lot of the things that I had blogged about. I had thoughts and feelings recorded, family events, funny moments with my kids, memories of my grandfather...it was great! Now I had it all bound up as a family record for my posterity (and I didn't feel so guilty about not keeping a consistent journal). My husband and kids have spent lots of time reading through it and looking at the pictures, and they agree that the book was well worth the money. They had also forgotten some of the things we had done that year, and loved to see their younger selves. So, I will have to work towards printing the other years out too.
I am now recommitted to blogging. I haven't done much with it in the past year, only recording things here and there, but now that I can see what kind of record it can become I am going to try and do a lot better.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

If this isn't your castle, then you aren't my prince!

I found this while I was preparing my Laurel lesson this week. I love it, and just had to share.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Star Wars Night at the Ems

We went to Star Wars night at the Ems baseball game last week.
It was a lot of fun! They had a star wars character representing each of the Ems players.
They had the "rebels" playing against the "empire" on the scoreboard, and they played Star Wars music and video clips.
We brought Grandma with us - she and Leilani did not dress up in costume for the occasion.
Benjamin, however, wore his clone trooper costume to the game.
Emily and Elisabeth wore jedi robes (they are actually padawans). Cousin Natalie didn't have a costume, but she still managed to have fun. :)
There were lots of different Star Wars characters to have pictures taken with. Leilani was excited that the Storm Trooper let her hold his gun!
Alan and I got in a few pictures too. He is not as big a Star Wars fan as I am, but he is supportive. Besides, how often does his wife actually ask to go to a baseball game?!!

One of the jedi masters asked if she could get a picture with my little padawans. I guess they don't have a lot of girls dress up?
My sister Kari and I were excited to have our pictures too. We even did it without the kids!
Benjamin was the most excited, however. He kept watching for more characters to come out during the entire game.
Little Tanner had fun too. He didn't dress up, but he did get a couple pictures with a Jedi and the wookie.
It was fun. At one point they had Darth Vader out on the field having a lightsaber duel with Sluggo the bear (the Emerald's mascot). They had some jawas race around the field, and they had Princess Leia and some other characters too. My kids are already to go again next year (it is an annual event), and have decided which costumes we need to get between now and then.

Sunday, June 19, 2011


We had two graduations in our family this year - preschool and 5th grade. Although some people feel that these type of graduations are silly, they do represent a big transition in a child's life. Ben will be moving on to Kindergarten, which means that he will start going to school on a daily basis and learning Japanese. Emily will be moving on to middle school, which means lockers, 7 different classes, changing clothes for PE, and many other changes.

Ben has enjoyed the NEHS preschool. He is the last of my kids to attend there...wow, who thought the day would come?!!!
He is very excited to be moving on to Kindergarten, but he enjoyed every minute of preschool.

He especially liked having his cousins Danny and Hailey at preschool with him. They looked forward to spending the time together.

Emily was not quite as excited as Benjamin to graduate. Her two best friends are going to different middle schools, and she wants to go with them. It will be hard for her to be away from them after six years of going to school together.
Who knows? Maybe they will meet up again at some point. We told Emily that she has to at least try Kelly middle school out next year (I do not want to drive my two middle schoolers to two different schools each morning). Then we will see if we want to make changes when Leilani goes to high school.
It was a nice graduation ceremony. They sang and did a tribute through skits and songs to their teachers in each grade. They are a funny class, with lots of personality. We really enjoyed the performance.
Emily's group did the tribute to the 5th grade teachers, and then Emily was chosen to give the farewell speech (along with a boy) to everyone. Her teacher told me that she chose her because she speaks Japanese so well. She really does enjoy the Japanese. Hopefully she can keep progressing...she is worried that the middle school Japanese class will be too easy.
We are very proud of her and all she has accomplished.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Urashima Taro - the fisherman

The 2nd grade play this year was Urashima Taro - which is the name of a fisherman who saves a turtle and then visits an undersea kingdom and then goes home to find out that 300 years has passed and everyone he knew is dead.

Elisabeth was a narrator and the sea princess.

The kids had to learn their parts in both English and Japanese, because they did the play twice - once in English and once in Japanese.

Elisabeth sang a solo in Japanese. She did a great job!

The kids also played the taiko drums.

A funny thing happened after the play. Alan had been on a business trip to Louisiana and just got home in time for the play that night. I cut my hair off while he was gone (above my shoulders). So, I was taking pictures of Elisabeth with her teachers after the play, and Alan came up behind me and said, "I'm embarrassed because I couldn't find you. I was looking for you and looking for you and then I remembered that you had short hair now." I asked him, "Don't you pay any attention to what I am wearing?" He answered, " That's how I found you. I tried to remember what you were wearing and then I saw you and thought - oh yeah, that is her with the short hair." It made me laugh.