Friday, July 30, 2010

Reality Figurines - Breaking the Mold This Time!

(sigh) I just love this Willow Creek figurine. The way you have to imagine her expression, the way she has her arm loosely draped around her son. He looks so sweet, standing there willingly in her gentle embrace.

Is that why she's been broken three times?  Why not the other two figurines - the angel and the married couple? Is it a subliminal message from the boys that they will NOT be TAMED?   First my sweet little 2 year old nephew got a hold of it. I thought it was really made of wood and let him carry it to his mom and let her talk him into giving it up. Little did I know when she told him to give it to her he would do the ol' "bolt-run-throw" routine in the tile-floored bathroom - "CRASH" and smitherines she went. I didn't get worked up. After all, I thought it was indestructible in the first place.

So my sweet sister sent me a new one and I took her picture before anything happened to her again (pict above).

And what happened to her? HMMMMM?  One or two of the boys were rough-housing with the dog in my bedroom and knocked her off her spot on the windowsill and now she looks like this.....

So I super-glued her back together and swore that if anyone ever decapitates her again, I'm going to break off her arm and glue it back around the little statue boys neck!

Alas, one windy day the blinds knocked her off the windowsill again. And even though the boys didn't do it, I put her back together in a way that truly reflects her emotions.....

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Happy Van giveaway

Okay, after spending two days catching up at home with 4 boys who were entertained 24/7 and suddenly "bored" I need to add back some HAPPY !  I am giving away two "Happy Vans".  If you are new here, click here to see what a Happy Van is all about.  If you need some "Happy" all you have to do is be a follower and leave a comment. I'll post them all at the end of the night and announce the winners on Friday.
Monday, July 26, 2010

Back from my Stay-cation!

We live in such a fabulous city that we can enjoy an entire week of fun without ever leaving or spending a bundle.  My mom came for her annual summer visit and the first thing we did was head up 7000ft to Fairy Lake to picnic, hike,fish, geocache hunt, and letterbox hunt. I have to say this lake ties with Hyalite for being the most gorgeous lake. It's no wonder it's named after fairies! (Fairy Lake is behind the peak in the center of the pic)
And to make it more memorable for our family, the boys accidently left the van door wide open before we left for our 2 hrs of fun at the lake! Our purses were in there and let's just say all my mom's travel funds. There were about 17 cars in the parking area.  I love Montanan's - no one even touched it!
The next day we were off to the Museum of the Rockies. I buy family passes because it's always so fantastic I want to go back every time they change their main exhibit. MOR has the largest TRex skull and is headed by Jack Horner who's research Jurassic Park was based on. The current exhibit is Leonardo DaVinci's Machines in Motion. They just opened a new Kid's level upstairs with operational geysers! (parachute type water pops up and the floor rumbles)  Next we were off to the Bozeman Hot Springs - WAHOOOO! Splash all ya' want boys! The next day we were off in search of Pirate Treasure!!!ARRRGG! Turns out it took us THREE days to actually best ol' Blackbeard and loot his treasure (Letterbox).  Mom and I got "inked" (with the letterbox stamp) Found the Treasure!  Here's our Letterbox stamps: Hers is LC ours is "6Jeepers"  We made some delicious-smelling soaps and I will be giving the most gorgeous one away soon!  And wrapped up the week with our annual "Dinner Out-IN" as my Mom calls it. Instead of dragging all the boys to a restaurant and rushing to eat before one of them "expires" we learned years ago to just go buy some crab legs, baked potatoes and salad and really enjoy ourselves at home. It was sad to see her head back to her home state but hopefully the memories will keep until next time we can whoop-it-up together. We wrapped up our family week Sunday by taking them all to church, to the neighborhood bbq meet-n-greet and took 6 boys fishing at the great little city lake - And, yep, "I got one!" Stay tuned everyone, this next week or so I will have a couple giveaways!!
Thursday, July 22, 2010

Calling in the Creator.......

Dear God,
     Since you created me, is there any chance you might have an extra set of ears I could have? One set is just not enough. If I had four ears I could hear all of my children talking to me at once. And if it's okay, could I have an extra set of eyes - the kind with xray vision? That way I would see things like the door on the other side of the van closing on my son's fingers - and I'd see if his older (nemesis)brother ignored it or really didn't see it slowly rolling closed. Oh, and I'd also like to know if you have some extra arms laying around? They don't have to be my petite size - I'll take the extra long ones. That way I can do things like separate two boys while band-aiding another and finish making a sandwich with the other. And one last little request, I'd really appreciate it if I could have an extra brain - one that already has a law degree and a psychology degree? Then I'd be able to settle the squabbles and know for sure who was telling the truth and who fudged. Thanks God!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

How to Make a Volcano Whistle.....

That's my boy. That's Wyatt this week. He was awesome yesterday at the lake, but today was catch-up day at home and that lends to some "lettin' loose" when it comes to the boys. His older brother found Wyatt's Loco Roco video game wedged in the couch cushions and offered to return it to him if he would go find the Transformer bullet he (Wyatt) was suspected of hiding in his room. Wyatt gave it about a 30 second hunt and gave up. He decided to torture Mom until he got his way but I didn't go for it. It wasn't a tall order to look around his room and in his toy box for the bullet, he was just being lazy. He had a choice to let it drop and forget the video game but no, whining full-volume next to Mom is waaaay more fun. Throw in a little tugging and yanking on the rug she's standing on and wow - entertainment to no end if you are 7 years old.

What did mom do? Ignore. Ignore for another 5 minutes. Ignore some more. State the facts, "look for the bullet and the game is returned to you", Ignore some more while cleaning the sink. (by the way, the whining actually enhances the scrubbing -sink looks great!).

What did brothers do? Brothers were so sick of it they offered to hand over the game just to spare me!

Now, how did I snuff out my little volcano? I got out the video camera and erupted it. It only took a second for him to scream and run into my room and close the door. Within 5 minutes he returned, whistling and stated, "Mom, I'm going to go look for the bullet."

Chalk one up for Mom today!
Friday, July 9, 2010

It's official..

I am now the mother of a TEENAGER!  Take that all you paranormal book characters - nothing could be as freaky as a brand-spankin'-new teenager. Dragons fear them, vampires shirk away, werewolves turn tail and run. I cast off my garlic necklace and hide behind my boy/man.
Happy 13th Birthday Josh!
Thursday, July 8, 2010

Garden Formula

8 parts dirt + 6boys+6shovels+12scoops Breyers Reeses Cup Ice Cream = 1 new garden!

In an effort to keep the boys from fighting, Grandma and I are cooking up projects to keep them busy. One long awaited project was the garden. The border has been stacked in a pile since last summer and now that it stopped raining and Dad was off work, it finally came together. We made it a family and friend affair, Grandpa driving the mower and dump trailer, all the boys spreading the dirt, me and Dad shovelling it out of the pick up into the dump and even invited the neighbor boys over to spread dirt. It took allllll day. We finished it off by having each boy plant a row of seeds that they are in charge of. The next day each boy added more seeds and a few plants.  It was so interesting seeing which boy would take to gardening the most. Hopfully they will be eager to keep "their" rows of lettuce, tomatoes, radishes, strawberries and carrots free of weeds!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

What (not) to teach a carload of boys.....


In an effort to lighten up the mood in the van, we allowed a popular game this summer - Slugbug.
In case you don't know this game, the rules are this:
Rule 1  - spot a Volkswagon Beetle 
Rule 2 - lightly slug the nearest person in the shoulder and say "SLUGBUG" 
Rule 3 - only the first one calls it 
Rule 5 - anyone hitting hard, slapping or double-tagging ends the game until the good mood returns
Rule 4 - Mom makes all the rules to Slugbug

I even go as far as to stop at a corner and text my husband "SLUGBUG" when we are riding in separate cars. He called me the other day while driving down the highway and said, "I just passed a car-hauler loaded with VW Bugs, can you imagine our van full of boys if they saw that?"

Now, if you want to play "Slugbug-extreme" with your 12 year old, you let Dad sit behind him in the van and let on that he's scoping for bugs. He can't escape and Dad's fully focused - not  driving as usual. To top it off, all Dad has to do is yell "Slugbug" at any random moment and 12 year old comes out of his seat so fast he engages the seatbelt lock!  Hilarious! (by the way 12 year old ate up all the attention)

We used to have a 66 bug before the boys came along. I loved that car and vow that one day when I don't need room for 6 I'll have another.  I can't wait to drive around scoping out minivans full of kids doing the "Slugbug"!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy 4th of July! In honor of all the fireworks, today's post is called: Firebugs

For summer, I picked up a cute little science experiment book for the boys. They were asking me for all kinds of salt, vinegar, cornstarch and eggs. No biggie - we've done those before. After the egg experiment was a let-down (no vinegar), my oldest started a project out front, just in front of the porch. I told him I'd get his ingredients after I finished balancing the checkbook and was almost done. I finished and looked out the front window to see my oldest, Josh, with the long bar-b-q lighter, lighting newspapers in a glass jar, his buddy-brother wadding up newspaper.......The sad thing is I was not phased. What is wrong with me? Have they dulled my cat-like reflexes and instincts? First I had a flashback to when I encouraged my sister to light matches and stick them in our pool - located inside the porch of an ancient wooden-shake house. I remember the punishment all too well!  I had to have a little talk with myself and come up with a punishment suited to that kind of careless behavior. When I played the "supporting firebug" role, I received my first big spanking and my sister wrote sentences all day. The boys are getting too big for spankings, so sentences ensued, "I will not put my family in danger by lighting fires" and "I will not encourage my brother to light fires".  Can I check that      1.Catch Boys Lighting Fires - check    off my "Raising Boys List" now?

Friday, July 2, 2010

Happy Van

This is called "Happy Van"
 Then this van is aptly named "Occasionally Unhappy Van"
I refuse to ride in "Occasionally Unhappy Van" any more. From now on I'm going to ride in the orange and white van that's full of sugary-sweet gumballs. No more riding in the red van full of bickering boys. It is incredibly difficult to discipline the back-row riders as they are picking on the middle-row riders and vice/versa. And if I can't ride in the happy van then I'm determined to buy a limo, put them all in the back and I'll sit up front with my husband driving, smiling as I push the button that raises the sound-proof dividing window.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Growing up with Granny....

We lived in the same city as my sons'  grandparents up until three years ago. Their grandma is the queen of garage sales. She loves to find things that are "bargains", " treasures", and generally any pitiful material item that looks lonely and in need of a home.  Truthfully, I think she just enjoys the chit-chat that goes along with visiting the sellers and buyers strolling up and down the driveway. And why shouldn't she - she's retired! Since our youngest was 2 1/2 when we moved to a new city, only our other three have been educated by her in the art of garage sale-ing. They look forward to trips to grandma's, easily convincing her to stop at every thrift shop and garage sale in the city limits. They squeal with glee when they come home from a visiting Grandma and dump out bags of one eyed stuffed animals, Transformers and  scuffed Super soakers.  We recently discovered that we have a major generational-relational gap since our move.  Our youngest, now 5 1/2 went along with Dad to the hardware store when dad decided to stop at a neighborhood garage sale. Our little guy looked at the driveway and remarked, "Aww Dad, I don't wanna look at that stuff!"