Showing posts with label motherhood. Show all posts
Showing posts with label motherhood. Show all posts

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Fun for our Summer

These boys only have three days left of school before it's summertime.  It's going to take alot of effort on my part to keep them from being glued to the TV or fighting like cats and dogs.  I have been collecting art projects to keep us busy.  They are not serious art, but here are a few I found on Pinterest  that look like lots of fun.

Sharpies with rubbing alcohol give a tie dye effect
 Humongous bubbles 

made with 6 cups water,
1 cup corn syrup, 
2 cups dish soap

Race cars made from toilet paper rolls

Cut the stems of roses into strands and place into food coloring bottles. 

Here is the link to my Pinterest page for children's ideas

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Mixing Legos

As a mother I am constantly fighting against the pull that T.V. and video games have on my boys.  Fortunately I learned when Henry was just a toddler, that the weekly limit for healthy kids should be 10 hours of TV viewing.  That knowledge helps me keep them down to 1 1/2 hours a day; but sometimes when I turn off the TV, the boys show strong emotions of anger or despair.  "There's nothing to do!"  I hear them say.

 Oh, am I just imagining that the house is full of toys, board games, books and art supplies?  Not to mention their bikes and scooters outside.  I had recently been threatening to start giving all these things away if the boys did not start playing with them.
 One day I pulled out our Lego Ideas Book to help get the creative juices flowing, but the boys found it intimidating.
   I realized I was going to have to sit down and build something myself, to prove to the boys that they didn't need a booklet of instructions to have fun with Legos. I didn't have enough gray blocks to build my church like the picture, so that was my first lesson to the boys - you don't have to use the same colors.  Then I didn't have the same smooth pieces as the book for the roof tiles, second lesson - get creative with what you do have.  My Stain Glass Cathedral ended up looking like a Japanese Temple.  I had fun and the boys stayed interested the whole time.
Near the finish, George made a tree for the church grounds and I realized he had used both traditional Legos and Duplo Legos.  What?!  I didn't know they could be used together!  Next time I will use the Duplo to build my foundation, and that will go much quicker.

I do recommend The Lego Ideas Book and have included the link up above.
There are fun projects to be found,  like this one.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

What I have learned about babies

I have both my sister 'n law Jordan and my second cousin Daisy are expecting their first babies in February.  
I found myself wanting to share things that I have learned in the last nine years. 

1. Don't be afraid of generic diapers.  I have tried them all - Walmart, Target & my local grocery store.  They work fine and they will save you dollars each week on your grocery bill.

2. Always check their clothes before throwing into the washer machine.  Stain sticks and sprays usually can get everything out.  Be extra careful with bananas.  They will almost instantly stain your favorite baby outfit.

3. Do not use a baby monitor at night.  You will achieve deeper sleep and the baby will always be able to wake you when they really need you.

4. Smile at your baby when you are changing a poopy diaper.

5. Speak to your baby from the beginning like they understand, in your regular voice.

6. When your baby starts sleeping through the night, and then regresses, calm them down and offer them a bottle of water.  Explain to them its time to go back to sleep and that you are not coming back in.

7. Once your baby stops eating baby food, offer them exactly what the you are eating, obviously cut into to small pieces.  If you make your own baby food you can start this sooner.  Babies enjoy all kinds of food.  Turkey sandwiches, salad, curry, whatever you are eating.  This will not only encourage you to maintain a balanced diet, but prevent them from being a picky eater.

8. Always use the straps when you place your baby in a shopping cart or trolley. 
Never assume they will stay put.

I'll stop being a Mrs. Know It All now.  Congratulations and welcome to Motherhood! Your baby will bring you so much joy and love, and you will stretch and grow like never before.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Good Boy Points

Last summer, in desperation to motivate my boys, I shouted out "whoever gets ready for bed in five minutes gets a point!"  I didn't know what a point meant, neither did the boys, but they still scrambled upstairs.

 After a week of earning, I decided how the boys could use their points.  I created Good Boys Points, different than chores which earn allowance.  Good Boy Points can be used for going nice places and having nice treats.  For instance 64 good boy points will get you pancakes at Magleby's for breakfast or 120 points earns you a trip to Provo's Beach Resort.  Basically I give one point the value of 25 cents.  However much something would cost in money, I double it in points, (and gas money is also figured into the total if the destination is farther than our local town.)

                                 Good Boy Points

No Fighting
Bedtime Winner
Go to Sleep
Sunday good boy
Help with Ted
Listen to Mom



Bedtime winner is the fastest boy to get ready for bed, then they can all earn if they go to sleep quickly.  It's hard to remember if there was no fighting that day, but I have found myself rewarding the boy who is not involved in a squabble at that particular time.  They are always asking to go fun places, this system helps me feel better about  the money I spend taking them.   

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Calee Reed

Recently I asked my mom what talents and tendencies she had hoped her children would possess.  I know when ever I hear George sing, I stop and wonder,  "will he be my musical one?"  Really, I have decided my three big goals for my children are:

1. Receive answers to prayers
2. Make smart money decisions
3. Be a great conversationalist

 But back to my opening statement...thinking about it some more, I can see how my mom was influencing us- me and my siblings. Going to the library was a steady occurrence in my childhood. We'd go for story time and then enjoyed  the freedom to wondering thru the stacks, twists and corners, searching for known and unknown treasures.  The library - any library is a happy cozy place for me,  I am so fond of those earliest memories.

We were always listening to good music, in car and in the house; "Four Seasons" by Vivaldi, the soundtrack to Out of Africa, Barry Manillo, Les Miserables, James Galway, the Beach Boys, the list goes on.

My mom exposed us to a wide range of cultural arts.  I remember as a little girl, going to see the Lamanite Generation perform, now known as the Living Legends.  I was blown away, and declared that was what I wanted to do when I grew up, as she tucked me into bed that night. My mom is still introducing me to new books and music all the time with her frequent gifts in the mail, and her magazine clippings that she thinks I will appreciate.  I do.

My mom is the most well rounded person I know.  She is always up to date on politics, sports, Hollywood, Broadway, classical musicians, authors, and she is my number one go-to for spiritual advice.   Though I enjoy a wide variety of topics with my mom, hearing her testimony, is what is most special to me.

This whole post was inspired by Calee Reed's song "She Put the Music in Me", a song written about her mom.  I echo her sentiments.  You can enjoy the music video just below this cover art.

Here is Calee's webpage where you can listen to samples of other songs on her album.  I really like "Time to Love".

Monday, June 4, 2012

Game plan for Summer

The boys are out of school and the summer is officially on!  I have decided each week we will have:

art day
friends day
adventure day
service day
library day

Today was service day.  I am in the process of signing up for a Meals on Wheels route, but while we wait for our assignment, I decided to let the boys go grocery shopping for our local Food Pantry.  Each was given $10, five could be spent on fresh produce and five could be spent on packaged food.  It was an attempt to teach them about the cost of food,  but when we went to pay, somehow one boy had already lost one of his five dollar bills!  Anyway, this is what they came up with:

Boy #1                                            Boy #2                                    
Box of Pasta Roni                           Can of Pineapple                    
Bag of Tortilla Chips                       Can of Green Beans                  
Jar of Salsa                                     Can of Corn                              
Celery Stalk                                    Jar of Peanut Butter                  
Bag of Baby Carrots                       Cantelope
                                                       4 Pears

 Bottle of Apple Juice
Box of Wheat Thins
Bag of Pistachios
Small bunch of Bananas

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

My affairs in order

Last year I had several moments when the thought of dying young over came me with fear. I decided to do something about it. I started drinking green smoothies regularly, but I also decided to prepare heirlooms for my boys.

I typed out the advise I plan on teaching my boys when they are older. There are sections for driving, college, working, dating, marriage, family, prayer and scriptures. I then compiled the pages into little books for each son.

Next I wrote a letter to each boy explaining what dress and piece of jewelery I'd like to leave them when I'm gone. I included the stories behind each item. I know it seems silly spending time thinking about stuff like this, but I haven't had anymore panic attacks.

Saturday, May 22, 2010


Posterity is one of my most favorite words because of the emotions it invokes inside me.

I visited my friend Alice this week and studied her wall of family photos. When her children were five years old she took them each for a head shot style portrait. She had them dressed in a white shirt or blouse with a white background, and the film was black and white. Years later she used the same formula for each of her grandchildren.

You can not tell the difference between the generations in terms of style! It's am amazing collection of her posterity. Sweet sweet faces.

I am thinking of applying this idea to my family, expect Henry is already six, so I will have a six year tradition. You could variate the style according to your liking. Halloween costumes or beach pictures would be fun to collect.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Nurturing our children

I found another great book at the library called "401 ways to get your kids to work at home" by Bonnnie McCullough and Susan Monson. I highly recommend it. 240 pages includes: lists of skills to be learned at home and at what age is it appropriate to be expected, a wide variety of chore charts and an assortment of rewards, advise for trouble-shooting, and being flexible in achieving results as your family's situation changes.

The extensive list of skills encompassed alot more than I had initially considered: personal care skills, clothing care skills, household skills, cooking skills, money skills, navigation & auto skills, and misc. skills such as learn to swim, plan a party, paint a room, etc.

The authors feel strongly about children being included in the setting of goals pertaining to housework, plus discussing these goals and more during a weekly family council. This practice instills the children with a sense of belonging and contribution to their family.

My favorite ideas were in the rewards chapter. Pick a board game your child enjoys playing, each time you want to reward them for good work you give them a piece or two. Once they have earned all the pieces, your child will be thrilled because you will sit down and play that game with them. For example, marbles for Chinese checkers, dominoes, or any game that was a nice number of pieces.

The other idea I thought was fun was to have random inspections. If your child's jobs are done on time you would leave a note and maybe a small treat on their bed saying what a good job they are doing. Oh, I forgot to mention that actually it is the "House fairy" that stops by for the inspection. So in this example if the child's job is not done the note says "I stopped by to take a peek, twenty jelly beans were for you, but I had to subtract a few. Better luck next time!" Something like this would be a great surprise and help keep your children on their toes.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Isn't it about time?

Tonight I took the boys to Temple Square, something I've wanted to do since the new year. It was even better than I had hoped. We entered the Visitor's Center looking for a short film to watch and found an amazing variety of displays. Huge paintings and a city model of Jerusalem to follow the life of Christ.......wax figures of the prophets of old, with a timeline of all the scpritures plus multiple short films to bring the Book of Mormon stories to life.

But what touched my heart was the church's assortment of commerials. There was a choice of twelve you could select with a touch screen. The boys were having too much fun being in charge of the screen so I watched the one minute blips over and over. I have seen similar commericals before over the years, but maybe not since I have become a mother.

The light turned on in my mind, "Oh, this is a clear and unmistakeable statement." My children come first.