Story Box

Hannah and Sabrina put together their own story box after watching Pinky Dinky Doo. They were on a real kick watching this show and love to tell stories just like Pinky.  They found two cardboard moving boxes and we taped them together so they could both fit inside. Now they can use chalk to draw pictures of the stories they tell, and it erases really well by wiping with a dry cloth. Who needs a chalkboard?  So clever.

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What’s Up

I’m coming into a new phase of life: having all of the kids in school. It’s made me think about what else I can do, now that I usually get a full nights sleep and don’t have the baby diapers or toddler messes that seem to suck the minutes out of every day in that parenting phase.  I’ve spent a lot of my online energy on GenerationClean. Generation Clean is a way that I feel I can use my experience to help other children and families. Parents don’t get a manual, so I’m sort of putting one of my own together. I list and post resources for families, and generally add the positive and good things that I have found for my kids. It’s not even close to comprehensive yet, but I keep adding to it.

I just re-read a Sheri Dew book called No One Can Take Your Place that I was given years ago. I loved reading it, and it is the most powerful, motivational book I have read on the importance of finding your life’s mission and then living with purpose and faith. I also read the Opening of 2010 BYU Womens Conference by Julie Beck last night.  It has a similar theme and both have helped me feel like my personal mission is to raise my family right, and help other families do the same. That sounds so trite when I write it like that, but it is a real push I feel to prepare my children for the crud that is, and will be, bombarding them throughout their lives.

Let us talk now about how we choose to walk with the Lord. First of all, we have to know what our responsibilities are and how to fulfill them. We know that, as women of God, this is a time when we need an increase of faith and personal righteousness. Never at any time in the world have we needed more faith from the women of God. By this I mean a faith of power as was taught by Joseph Smith. The kind of faith that creates miracles and calls down the powers of angels and heavenly help. That kind of increase of faith and personal righteousness will strengthen us. Never at any time in the history of the world have we needed stronger families and stronger homes. It is out of those homes and families that the next generation comes. As each of us walks out of our own home every day, how strong is that home that we are leaving? Is it a bastion of strength and power for us? There has never been a time when we have needed more seeking out and helping those in need. There are so many around us who are struggling because of the mischief caused by the adversary and the difficulties of mortal life. We know from reading in the scriptures that even the best of the best of the Lord’s favored people will not escape mortal life. We will have experiences that test us and try us, and it is the network of help that we provide for each other that strengthens us. These are individual responsibilities, and they are also group responsibilities of the worldwide Relief Society.
We understand the power of a group working in faith, strengthening homes, and seeking out to help one another.

I have a sort of family motto that I use in our home it is:

“Seek the good, then do good, to be good.”

This sort of sums up the way I believe we become good people. Good is not something you can just “be.” First, we need to surround ourselves with good things, and then act in a way that reflects the good we have found. The combination of these things is what makes us into a “good person.” It is a formula that I think about every time I tell my children,”be good!” I recognized that idea again when I read Julie Beck’s statement:

Let us talk now about how we choose to walk with the Lord. First of all, we have to know what our responsibilities are and how to fulfill them (SEEK GOOD). We know that, as women of God, this is a time when we need an increase of faith and personal righteousness. Never at any time in the world have we needed more faith from the women of God… The kind of faith that creates miracles and calls down the powers of angels and heavenly help. That kind of increase of faith and personal righteousness will strengthen us. Never at any time in the history of the world have we needed stronger families and stronger homes. It is out of those homes and families that the next generation comes. As each of us walks out of our own home every day, how strong is that home that we are leaving? Is it a bastion of strength and power for us?

There has never been a time when we have needed more seeking out and helping those in need. There are so many around us who are struggling because of the mischief caused by the adversary and the difficulties of mortal life. We know from reading in the scriptures that even the best of the best of the Lord’s favored people will not escape mortal life. We will have experiences that test us and try us, and it is the network of help that we provide for each other (DO GOOD) that strengthens us. These are individual responsibilities, and they are also group responsibilities … We understand the power of a group working in faith, strengthening homes, and seeking out to help one another…

I want to be a part of a network that provides help for others. I hope I can do that with Generation Clean.

Rob is once again looking for a new job. It seems that the Lord has a plan for our family that requires lots of moving and meeting new friends. But maybe this time we’ll be able to stay where we’re at;  It doesn’t look likely now because the jobs with most promise are in Washington state, Virginia and the Los Angeles area. I suppose the move back to LA would be the least dramatic since we’ve lived there before and if we were able to go back to the same city there would be less to adjust to.

I registered Sabrina for kindergarten. I had to register at the school our address is assigned, even though we weren’t able to get in there when we first moved in and have been going to another school. I still need to turn in a request for an intra-district transfer. (It may all be moot if there’s a move, but since I love paperwork so much I decided to get it done anyway.)

Sabrina lost her third tooth after school last week. We usually hang around for 20 minutes and some of the kids stay and play on the playground together while the moms chat. She was running around having a great time and realized that her tooth was gone. She drew a picture for the tooth fairy of how it all happened and the tooth fairy left her 4 state quarters as usual.

Emma sent in her availability for the New Testament movie shoot. She will be an extra and we’ll travel for the filming in Utah sometime between July and October. She’s now training the fourth graders that will be on traffic patrol next year. She’s done a great job on the squad and has never complained about having to get up and be there early on Tuesdays. (The rest of us have done a little complaining though.)

Hannah’s class has done an exhaustive study of ocean animals this year. They just presented a memorized poem called “Commotion in the Ocean” that teaches all about the different creatures and was so cute. Her part was the dolphin: “The wonderful thing about dolphins, is hearing them trying to speak, it’s not how do you do? as I say to you, It’s more of a click, whistle, squeak!”

Hunter has a million inventions swirling around in his brain. Right now he’s working on a kaleidescope ceiling, a bedroom door that opens like a garage door, and a global tunnel that will take you from one side of the world to the other in 11 minutes. He’s got his sights set high, so who knows what he’ll come up with once he has some more math, science, and engineering classes under his belt.

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Gals and Dolls

Emma has a renewed interest in American Girl lately, and had a party where her friends brought their AG dolls for her tenth birthday. They had a great time together.

Emma really loved this bag full of dollar bills and Snickers bar. Thanks N & P! She also loved the birthday cards & money &  friendship bracelet kit from her beloved Aunties. Thanks!

She has spent a lot of time doing her American Girl crafts, and jobs around the house. She’s saving up for Felicity, the American girl from Revolutionary War times that will be retired after Christmas. She has $14.00 to go…

Here’s a picture Emma took of Mia wearing a new sundress that Emma got for her birthday. Emma has started up her My American Girl blog again, and would love it if you stopped by and left her a comment with what you think of the new look.

Sabrina and Hannah have joined in on the doll loving fun and games. Sabrina still adores her baby Lilly, and picked this fabric for a new dress for her. This is the first time I have made doll clothes from a pattern (Thanks Mom for sending those!) and Sabrina is happy with it, so I count it as a success.

Here is Hannah with the “raincoat” I made for her Our Generation doll.

Last night Hunter was at a youth fireside and the three girls were playing that they lived in Felicity’s time. They turned all of the lights out, we lit some candles and the girls poured water from a little teapot, embroidered, played with corn husk and fabric dolls, and talked about patriots and loyalists. It was so much fun to watch them play, and hear Emma talking about what she has learned from reading the AG books- Things like corsets, gingham, and patriot tea made from raspberry leaves.

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Lousy Girls

Definition

Lousy (lou-zee)
strongly audible sounds; abounding in or full of noise. The combination of the words loud and noisy.

Used in a home situation
Mom: “Girls it’s quiet sleeping time now. No more talking.”
Hannah and Sabrina: “Ok, we won’t be lousy!”

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Twin T-Shirts

We have a little obsession with getting fun t-shirts. We find them mostly on Woot. Rob actually finds them so he can tell you other sites to look at too. We’re still waiting to get this one. Any Princess Bride fans will appreciate it. One day last week we all had a twin, so we took this picture. The little girls’ shirts are from Walmart or Target- They like to be twinners sometimes too.

See how Emma only has 3 inches until she’s as tall as me? And how Hunter’s passed me and is gaining on Rob? And how Sabrina is gaining on Hannah? It ain’t right I tell you. They grow too fast!

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A Child’s Prayer

The last two nights, this has been part of our sweet Hannah’s prayer: “…help us to be thankful and nice to people that are mean, that we don’t know…” The first night she said this Rob asked her what that part was about, and she said, “someone was mean to Mommy on the phone and we don’t know them.” I told Daddy how Hannah and the girls helped me feel better and we gave her a big hug.

Hannah was in the room with me when I hung up the phone from Mom #1’s call. Actually, all of the girls were. They asked me why I was crying and I said that someone was mean to me on the phone. They asked who it was and I told them that they don’t know her. Which is true because I don’t even really know Mom #1 or Mom #2. I just know who they are.

We happened to have a Family Home Evening lesson that same day on how being Popular doesn’t matter, and how we should not carry what others say about us in our “backpack” because it will just make our life more difficult. I’ve told my kids not to talk about it with their friends and that Mommy is fine now. I’m a little nervous for Sunday. I hope the Moms haven’t mentioned anything to their kids so they don’t say anything to mine. We’ll see how it goes.

By the way, I love this DVD we’ve been using that’s short presentations by John Bytheway. He’s a youth speaker that I remember hearing when I was in high school too. He has a great sense of humor and a strong testimony that really appeals to the tween/teen age group. It’s called Family Night with John Bytheway. Our kids love it and beg to watch more, but we only do one at a time to keep them interested. Highly recommended!

PS. A new friend dropped by yesterday with cookies for my family. She has an infant and older children in school. She said she took them to be tested for pertussis and thanked me for the notice. :)

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