Friday, July 18, 2014


As we announced recently, we are moving on August 4th. Grayson's actual birthday is on August 14th, but we wanted to have a party for him with his friends before we leave. Originally, I had AMAZING plans for a huge Carnival to celebrate ALL three of our August birthday kids, but after realizing, HOLY COW! We are moving in just a few weeks and we don't know where we're going to live, or where to enroll our kid in school, or where to find boxes?!?! Suddenly, the carnival idea didn't seem so amazing. 

So, I settled. And OHHHHH I am soooo glad. This was the easiest party I've ever done. We took Grayson and five friends bowling and then gave them a bunch of tokens to play arcade games. Afterward we went back to our place and had pizza, cake and ice cream then ended with opening presents. BAM. 

The boys were soooo excited when they got to the prize counter. Each kid only won about 14 tickets, but they had army guys for 4 tickets, so everyone came home with a small army. It was so cute. I absolutely LOVE this stage! This age is the best and funnest. 

Grayson wanted a Pokemon cake so we found this design online. I think it turned out SUPER cute for my novice skill set. Grayson loved it and it made all the kids giggle, so I'll call it a job well done. 

All the gifts:

Almost 7 years old! I can't believe it. We decided not to give him our gift yet, because my parents pitched in to buy it, and since we are now moving right by my parents, we will let him open it with ALL of us. That thought makes me a little excited! 

Thursday, June 12, 2014


Whenever we pass the fishing rods at any store, Grayson always grabs one and begs, "Pleeeease can we buy one!" And then following our answer he always throws in the good ol' "We never get to go fishing." 

That's right, kiddo. Because it's expensive and we're not paying for the equipment and a license! 

BUT... a few weeks ago while we were at the zoo, I just happened to see a little handout for "free fishing day" hosted by the game and fish department. They actually set up a booth at the pond with free gear and bait and let you fish... for FREE! 

So naturally, we HAD to take our kids for family home evening. 

Jaye caught a fish in less than 10 minutes so Grayson started getting really antsy about it taking so long. 

For the record... Laycee dressed herself. 

The girls' interest didn't last long, but they still had fun in other ways. 

In retrospect... fishing while holding a baby... is hard. 

At the very end, Barry caught this huge, prize-winning beauty.
(At least, that's our story...) 

After we returned the gear, we headed to the store to buy our FHE treats. While waiting in the car, Grayson randomly burst into tears. I asked what was wrong, and he said, "I didn't catch anything."

Talk about a delayed reaction!


Since this could be our last summer in Rexburg, I decided to be a little crazy and invited Grayson's ENTIRE Kindergarten class over for an "Summer Kick off party". Only 13 kids showed up (out of the 25) so it wasn't as wild as I was expecting, but we had a lot of fun! My neighbor and dear friend helped me put it together. 
We decorated cookies, had a candy hunt, tail tag (where you have to try and pull crepe paper tails off of the other players), missionary tag...

Red Rover...
The kids wanted to call someone over and Grayson said, "No! Call Jaye!" I felt like a proud mama to see my boy trying to include his little sister. Until he added, "Call Jaye! She's the weakest!" 

And we asked each kid to bring a $3 or less summer gift to exchange (like bubbles, chalk). At the end of the party, we did a musical gift pass. This was almost a disaster because a few of the kids (mine included) were upset they didn't get to have the gift they brought! A few lips were pouting, a few tears were shed, but overall, the party was a GREAT success!

When I left the room, Laycee was asleep on the couch, and when I walked back in, she was on the floor with a chair on top of her... still asleep. I really wish I could've seen how this happened!

 Speaking of craziness, we did NOT plan out our summer activities very well! Grayson just started t-ball. We assumed the games would be in the evening but they are ALL in the morning, right when Jaye needs to be picked up from preschool. I also have story time at the same time, and for the next two weeks, Jaye will have swim lessons... at the same time! UGH. We're still new at this.

But Grayson LOVES t-ball. So I guess the amazing juggling act of picking up and dropping off is totally worth it.

We also did a free 3 day summer art camp. I wish I would've taken pictures all three days, but it was so fun! The first day they learned about abstract drawing, the next day was dot painting, and the last day was clay sculpting. It was a blast. Mostly. 
It started at 1 in the hot afternoon when Jackson SHOULD be napping, so he mostly just screamed the whole time. So let's say that the kids had a blast... and Mommy felt like my nerves were on a cheese grater. 

This picture is a big deal. Jackson has ALWAYS been terrified of the water. We've had to scrub him with a washcloth because he screams when we put him in the water. Lately however, he has really enjoyed being in the bathroom while his siblings take a bath. So this last time, I decided to ease him into the water while they were playing and VOILA! He was nervous for a few seconds but then started having a ball! Finally. 

Monday, June 2, 2014


Yesterday on our way to church, Jaye stated, "Jesus is always stuck in my head."

I asked, "Why?"

JAYE: " Because I love him so much!"

(I don't know what she means, but it sure is cute!)

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Bee of the Week

Grayson got to be the "Bee of the Week" in Kindergarten. Amongst the special privileges received in class (line leader, special helper, etc.) for the week, he got to take the "Bee Bag" home. This involved a bee craft, story, filling out an "All about Me" booklet, and taking "Mrs. Bee" (a bee stuffed animal) out and then journaling in the class journal about their adventure. 

On Friday, the Bee of the Week reads their journal page and their "Me" book to the class and the parents are welcome to come in at the end  and read a story or do a craft. His teacher asked if I wanted to also celebrate his "half-birthday" since his is in the summer time, so I got to bring treats. 

I love any excuse to do a story time, so Grayson helped me pick this hilarious book about a rooster who has forgotten how to crow, so he makes all kinds of outrageous noises. In the end he saves the day and remembers how to do it right. 

I looked online for "Rooster desserts" and couldn't believe I actually found this super cute idea! 
Aren't these cupcakes hilarious!? This picture still makes me giggle. And the class sure got a kick out of them and out of helping make all the weird noises in the book! It was so fun. 

The class sang "Happy Birthday" and so my son suddenly feigned shy (hence the coat over his head). What a goof ball! 

I'm glad his teacher made him take it off by the end of the song so I could snap this cute smile. Love it! 


Random silliness at the Ricks'

(If you don't approve of bathroom humor... skip to the next picture.) 

     Laycee approached me and Barry in deep concern. She kept saying "Pinky Pie pooped!" We thought she was just pretending (like always) so we played along since she was so upset and worried for her little pony. Finally, she lifted up it's tail to show us there actually was a big moist brown glob of... well, I wasn't sure... and beginning to feel a bit worried myself! 

Luckily, Daddy solved the mystery. Pudding. Phew!  
    I still think this is crazy, but Grayson was required to give a 5 minute oral report... in KINDERGARTEN! After reading "The Magic School Bus", the one where the class travels inside of a human body, Grayson desperately wanted to do that for his report. He wanted to cover everything in the book, how food is converted into energy and travels through the body in our blood... but it was a little too advanced for a 5 minute speech.

    So he settled on healthy eating. For his required visual aid, I traced his body on butcher paper. He came up with the cutest idea (with no motherly prompting) to show pictures of healthy and unhealthy foods to the class and have them shout out which category it fell under. The healthy food was taped to the blue guy's stomach, and the unhealhy food was taped to the wall. After the presentation, he passed out little baggies of healthy baby carrots. I'm proud of him. I don't remember giving an oral report until second grade! His class loved it, even though he presented it in quite a monotone voice. His theatrical parents will have to teach him some Ricks' Flare! 
You might recall that my kids are crazy, CRAZY, bug-lovers. Laycee is absolutely no exception. She might even love bugs more than the others. I'm pretty sure even if she never had a real friend, she'd be completely content if she just had a lady bug, or a June Bug, or **shudder** a spider to play with. Here she is with her pal "Baby Lady Bug".                                
                                                                 (on the tip of her finger)

We had stake conference a few weeks ago, and I spent a few hours the night prior, scouring the internet and printing off activity and coloring pages that matched each of the kids' interests. Grayson got Skylanders pages, Jaye got princess pages, and Laycee got Minnie Mouse and Care Bears pages. 

And I literally spent the entire two hours of conference, playing with Laycee's invisible lady bug. She never even touched my sweet gesture of loving mother-ness. Nope. We fed it, put it to bed, built it it's own little pink church. ALL that EFFORT... and we played with a fake bug. 

Maybe for her birthday I'll give her an empty box and say it's a Lady Bug.

I guess I better throw in a story about Jaye now. Jaye is beautiful, and sweet, and adorable, and kind of creepy. 
At dinner she sang (in her sweet little voice and to the
 tune of B-I-N-G-O) 

"There was a man who punched his dog and then it started bleeding!" 


We all laughed so hard at the unexpected lyrics. And then, at another time, she drew a sweet stick figure picture of Daddy. And on the reverse side was a thoughtful picture of Mommy. With spikes all over her head so she can fight people.

Where does she get this stuff?! Silly girl.If she weren't so pleasant and cheerful... I might be worried. Especially for poor Bingo.   

Jackie Boy

I adore this child. 
He is the sweetest, most loving and adorable little boy in the entire world. 

 I'm sooooo glad we didn't follow everyone's "advice" and wait until Barry was 
done with school to have this sweet little piece of Heaven.