Monday, August 25, 2008

Schoolhouse rock!

Well, since I've been behind on posts (because of previously named reasons), I figured I better try to catch up before I leave on yet another vacation. The kids started school on the 11th. Don't they all look so handsome in their new school clothes?! As usual, I was totally and completely sad to see them go. I took Tanner and Trevor to school and as I was crossing the crosswalk, not even to the school yet, I started to cry. A friend even called later that day to see how I was, because she knows how hard the first few days are for me. So sweet of her. I am happy to report that I DID NOT drive up to the school this time to see how they were doing at recess. Jerel says it's like I'm "doing surveillance on the school." I just feel like I never see them anymore--I only get to see Chase for about 5 hours a day. Not enough. Especially when I think about him leaving on a mission in 4 years.

Every one so far has enjoyed their teachers and have had a great first few weeks of school. Chase has long days ahead of him right now as he is doing A-hour and has football after school. He leaves for carpool at 7:15 a.m. and doesn't get home until after 5:30 p.m. But he is excited to be starting Seminary this year. Jordan has had some late nights as he is still doing football every night for the next few weeks. On the first day of school, he came home and said "Mom, you're right. Girls do like contacts." (Enough said, wink.) And both are a little worried about their work loads as they have a lot of advanced classes. I'm sure they'll do great. Tanner wasn't sure what his teacher was going to be like and was kind of nervous, but says she's really nice. He's figured out that if you follow the rules then she's a good teacher. Funny how it works like that. And Tanner has talked Jerel, not me, into letting him play the trumpet. I don't know what he has got us into on that one. Trevor has been a little shy with the kids in his class, but I'm sure he will warm up to them soon. And he STILL is not eating his lunch every day. Trevor came home the first day and said, "Mom, I had a great day!"
I really wish I could get Chase's biology teacher on video describing the safety protocols for class. When Chase reenacted them (yes, I meant acting), it looked and sounded ha-larious. Maybe I can get Chase on video to act them out--GREAT idea! Here are some more pictures of Trevor walking off with his class (sigh) and the kids coming home.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

The big 40!

Jerel turned 40 today and I just wanted to share with you guys the top 40 reasons why I love Jerel. It took me only a few minutes to think of them because he has so many great qualities. I really could have listed much more. He's just such a great guy and I'm lucky to be married to him. Here's my 40 reasons why I love Jerel:

1. Honors his priesthood—dresses in his Sunday best to give blessings even if it’s 3:00 a.m. or Christmas Eve
2. Has a testimony of the gospel and loves the Lord
3. Loves musicals and can sing along to most of the songs too
4. Is my best friend—I can talk to him about anything
5. Doesn’t get mad when I start a sentence with “Promise you won’t get mad . . .”
6. Is very athletic, is great at most sports and loves anything about them
7. Extremely patient with me and the kids
8. Is totally funny—even “ha-larious” at times
9. Picks up after himself (without being asked)
10. Is a GREAT dad
11. Will turn off sports center or ESPN if I ask—which is a huge sacrifice since he watches anything on ESPN—including the spelling bee, basketball, table tennis, baseball, etc.
12. Coaches his kids in sports and does a fabulous job
13. Still pretends he speaks Russian and has a dragon named Zantha
14. Makes great waffles whenever the kids ask
15. Tries to come home early if I need him
16. Is really smart
17. Is a good provider for us
18. Never complains about being sick
19. Sees the blessings or “silver linings” in ALL things
20. Likes to go see plays with me
21. Went with me to American Idol and pretended to enjoy it
22. Has gotten really good at birthdays, anniversaries and Christmas gift giving
23. Doesn’t get frustrated when I read a book the whole time on road trips and never take a turn driving
24. Watches So You Think You Can Dance with me and make comments like he really cares about it
25. Love to wear and collect baseball hats from everywhere
26. Loves me no matter what, in fact he loves his whole family unconditionally, and I love how he treats his mom
27. Took me to the temple to be married and still takes me there often
28. My proposal was a surprise
29. Works hard at everything and teaches my boys that “a job worth doing is a job worth doing right”
30. Can fix pretty much anything
31. Keeps track of the kids when I’m talking with friends or playing games
32. Explains the scoring system of tennis every time we watch it on TV without complaint
33. Never acts worried, especially when I am
34. Cleans the house without being asked to—and does a good job too
35. Thinks it’s important for our boys to learn how to clean/work in the house AND in the yard—and works right along side them as he teaches them
36. Says he’s sorry first
37. Fulfills any calling he has whether it’s primary teacher or Elder’s Quorum President
38. Still insists he was raised by cheetahs
39. Plays tiger with the kids
40. Has a great singing voice even though he won’t admit it—and pretends to sing opera for the kids
p.s. To see a little tribute/slideshow about him, you can click here to go to his mom's blog. There's some good pictures there and a little blurb about him. She had three kids this week, including Shad and Jerel on the same day so there's a lot of good stuff there. Happy birthday Shad and Janel!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Oh to be young and a boy scout!!

Here is a link to a video that one of Jordan's scout leaders compiled showing various scenes from Camp Geronimo this past June. Our troop had 9 boys attend scout camp along with several leaders and parents. They had a great time and earned many merit badges along with several camp awards. The end of the video clip shows a few scenes from a scout trip to Gisela, AZ which has some great locations for cliff jumping.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Cute quips

"Mom, when I get married, I want a chocolate fountain. Chocolate fountains are so AWESOME! It's soo good!"-- Trevor (He went to a wedding reception with a chocolate fountain last weekend and wanted to leave with a cup of chocolate by the end of it.)
"Dad, is it true that you were raised by cheetahs."--Trevor
"Dad's not THAT old."--Trevor, after I reminded the kids that Jerel was turning 40 on Saturday.

p.s. Sorry that I have been MIA lately, I'm addicted to the Olympics, plus I went out of town. I'll get back to the blogging world SOON!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Happy birthday Aunt Charlene!

Charlene, me, and my mom

I am so glad I have this opportunity to tell my Aunt Charlene Happy Birthday--she just turned 70! Her kids had a big celebration for her up in Utah yesterday, but I wasn't able to attend. They put together a little scrapbook of memories as a special gift and I wanted to share a little bit of what I wrote to her. I just love my Aunt Charlene, and I have great memories from times we spent together. I loved going to her house to spend a month every summer as I was growing up. It was great having her family live up the street when I was in high school. I remember going over to her house every day after school. Having all those cousins around helped me feel like I had brothers and sisters.

One of my favorite memories of her is when I saw her sitting at the piano, with a pencil behind her ear, as she wrote a song. I love that she wrote a song—just for me—for my wedding. She is so extremely talented in music, and I have always been so proud of her music accomplishments. I get a big smile on my face every time I sing “zip-a-dee-ay and heigh-dee-ho.” (One of the reasons why I love this song is because she wrote it!! Aren't you all impressed now!?) I love that I got to sing with her recently and hear our voices blend, even though it was a sad time for all.

She is one of the kindest, sweetest people I know. Even though she always has a million people around her, she always makes sure I get individual attention from her. I know that she loves me and my family, and we love her.

I can’t think of a more appropriate thing to “sing” right now than:

“This month is such a special one; it’s birthday time for you.
We’d really like to celebrate your happy day with you.
Zip-a-dee-ay and heigh-dee-ho, here’s something we can do.
We’ll sing a song that we all know, Happy Birthday to you!”

Charlene is holding my mom

Words of Wisdom

"Knowledge without labor is profitless.
Knowledge with labor is genius."
Gordon B. Hinckley
My quotes for today struck a chord with me because we had a great lesson in Relief Society about the importance of work. We talked about how to teach our kids why it's important, benefits and blessings of working hard, having a desire to do "a job well done," and different ideas we can try as parents to motivate our kids. It's amazing to me the number of kids that don't do jobs at home. Yard work or cleaning the bathroom is a foreign concept to them. (I am not doing the lesson justice in my explanation--it really was just so good.) So here's my words of wisdom:

"Unfortunately, a few of our otherwise good youth are unstretched, having almost a free pass. Perks are provided, including cars complete with fuel and insurance—all paid for
by parents who sometimes listen in vain for a few
courteous and appreciative words."
Neal A. Maxwell

Friday, August 1, 2008

All It Takes Is All You Got

Jerel decided to start his own blog of running adventures. Can running for almost 40 miles in one week be considered an adventure? I'm thinking more like torture. Anyways, thought you all might be interested. It's linked on my blog buddies list on the right. You'll know it when you see it--it says "Jerel's Running Adventures." Pretty self-explanatory.