Thursday, December 11, 2014

Group Babysitting

This is simply a post to record all the good babysitting times we've had.  We started a family babysitting swap with 2 other families in our ward about a year ago, and I am pleased to report that it has gone extremely well!  The first Friday of the month one couple is in charge of watching the other 2 couples' kids from 4-8pm and then you rotate.  Because we all have a decent number of kids, we end up watching 14 kids on the night it's our turn to babysit!  Fun stuff!  There are times when it gets crazy, and winter is harder than summer because they are inside for a longer period, but overall it's totally worth it.  One hour of play, then get everyone some dinner, clean up toys before watching a new movie, throw in some popcorn and call it a night.  I've realized though that this only works with certain families with certain kids.  These 2 families have well behaved kids and their kids' ages match up well with ours, so it seems to work.  Look at how peaceful they all look.

Taryn and the barstools

 These pictures make her being up at the counter with me look like a wonderful and special moment for both of, don't get me wrong, this was one of those moments.  Unfortunately, her love of the barstools has both of us frustrated sometimes.  She gets up on them, moves them around to wherever she wants to be in the way, and then she falls off them.  Constantly.  She gets hurt, I want to tell her, " I told you so, and please get this freakin barstool out of my way!"  This does mean that she is very independent, and will get her own clementine and peel it herself when she wants one, which does have it's pros.  :)

Mmmm, who can pass up licking the beaters?  Taryn is a cutie and just for journaling purposes, some of her favorite words to say lately are: ba-con bits and blue-berries.  With an emphasis, to the point of almost spitting, on all the B's.  It is quite adorable.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014


 We've had a discussion in our house for awhile now about eating weird and "different" foods, mostly food that comes from the sea.  Sidney has a teacher who had them try some seaweed, Nathan recently went on a work trip to Atlanta where he had a unique seafood dish every meal, and the boys have been talking about how they LOVE crab, even though the last time they tried it was probably 3 years ago.  Nate has been prodding them to see if they would try some of the stuff that he's eaten, and all of them were certain that they would.  Nathan decided to put them to the test and found a groupon so we could try a bunch of stuff.
 We were amazed at how well behaved they were and how excited they were to try everything.  They had a bit of wasabi, a California sushi roll, a Las Vegas roll (tempura fried), octopus, shrimp, and their favorite; yellow tail - all raw, mind you.  They didn't love the sushi because it was hard to pick up and take half a bite with chopsticks, but they had a good time trying everything else!  What!?  They hate what I fix for dinner half the time, but they'll eat raw octopus?  As for myself, I enjoyed a plate of teriyaki chicken.  I used the excuse that I couldn't eat raw fish while I was pregnant, but I really didn't want to try any of it anyways.  :)  We had a good time together and the highlight was probably watching Owen eat a dime sized ball of wasabi and then yelling, "Yes, I can feel the burn coming out of this hole right here!" as he points to his left nostril. haha  (He is our spice eater, and won't back out of a challenge, so Nate gets him to eat all sorts of entertaining things.)
 Last, but not least, it seemed fitting to them to show off their ninja poses with their chopsticks. 

 Hi-ya!  Taryn can't be left out!  Thanks Dad for the fun food adventure!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The end of volleyball season

 Sidney and her team had a great year.  They won ALL their games and had a fun time together.  Enjoy all the fuzzy pictures I took of her getting her trophy at their pizza party at Alfy's.  Sidney worked hard at learning a new sport and I was proud of her for sticking with it even though she has some vertical challenges.  :)

Potty Trained?

 Taryn is going potty on the toilet!  Yeah!  We are so happy for her, and so happy to be able to pocket a little more cash - no diapers (for 3 months until the next one comes....).  She's been one of the easier ones to potty train, but we had been prepping her for months; taking her before she went to bed, sitting her on the toilet when we knew she needed to poop, etc.  Taryn now does a good job going pee on command and tells us when she needs to go, for the most part.  We still have our moments, but I will take them over having to wrestle her while changing her diaper!  Yahoo!

Grandma's Berry's 80th Birthday Party!

 Getting breakfast from McDonalds for the drive to LaGrande, OR - yum!  Thankfully it was only 6 hours and they all did a fabulous job.

 Rudyard was nice enough to play with the kids after they got out of the car.  He's a fantabulous uncle to our kids.  Thanks for giving us a break Rudd!

We squeezed our little motorcycle in the van and the kids had a fun time driving it before it started raining.

This is all the gear they put on before they went out to ride the go-karts.  It was muddy, which of course made it way more fun!

I think Sidney had the most fun riding the go-karts.  I don't blame her, all that freedom and fun for an 8 year old!

Because we were out in the boonies, Grandpa and Grandma (my mom and dad) made a piñata for us to break, instead of trick-or-treating for Halloween.


 Revree and Taryn with the bestest Grandpa!

 Breanna brought her Halloween pumpkins along, so we had fun cutting them out, roasting the seeds (Dad is the official pumpkin seed baker), and then smashing them with a bat after we had enjoyed looking at them for a day!  I don't know why we don't have any pictures of that!  I strained my pregnant belly just to hit that big pumpkin as hard as I could!

 My mom and Tami got a new dice game, Tenzi, and it was fun because both the grown-ups and kids could play together!  The kids played for hours!

 We don't look too bad considering we were camping in a lodge!  Don't they all clean up so perdy?

 My niece, Revree.  Aren't her eyes the most amazing things?  She is beautiful, just like her mom.

 Good luck blowing out aaaaaalll those candles Grandma!  It was so fun to light 80 of them!

 During the party my Grandma got everyone on the floor dancing.  She insisted that we all get out on the floor and dance away.  She had invited her "band" to come play for the party for some live music.  It was fun to hear her sing and hear the old people play their favorite music.  Classic.

I hope that I can look and feel as good as she does when I'm 80.  Happy Birthday Grandma!  You inspire us all to be better people and we are so grateful to have you in our lives.