January 31, 2010

Hump Day...

Saturday night I learned that February 1st is officially "hump day." Hump day for what? The boating season.

In celebration of the season, I wanted to share one of Scott's videos. This video shows how to get in the boat when the swimming platform is not attached to the boat. We give a shout out to Jason for being such a good sport and for being willing to let us all laugh "with" him every time we watch it.

January 29, 2010

Game Night...

Lately we've been having some friends over for game night. Our last game night started later than normal so the kids cuddled up on the couch and watched two movies. They had a great night and look forward to doing it again. Ivy keeps asking when her friends are coming over again.
I keep asking Scott the same thing- I'm ready for another late night game night. Carcassone with multiple expansion kits.

January 27, 2010

Ivy at Primary Children's in Riverton

I truly love Primary Children's Hospital. I am very grateful that we have such wonderful child friendly facilities near by. Ivy had to have a test to see if she has kidney reflux. The test is a very invasive test and one that the hospital said we may have to reschedule and do it with sedation.
I started preparing Ivy, letting her know that she was going to have a potty test- where they take lots of pictures of her. My mom talked to her about how I had the test when I was her same age. She didn't act nervous at all and was smiley the whole time.
In the waiting room she played and giggled.
When it was time to go back to the radiology department she remained all smiles. The nurses started to explain to Ivy what was going to happen. She jumped in and explained to them that she was going to have a "potty test" and that she wasn't worried about it.
She got to hold her teddy bear the whole time they prepped her and the whole time she had her test. His name is "Dr. Bear E Ball". She loves cuddling with him.

I loved her cute little body in the hospital gown.

My mom took several pictures of her while they were performing the test.

Afterwards, Ivy had a good time showing us the mural at Primary Children's and she showed us the fish that direct you down the halls to each department.
You may wonder why I would take pictures during a hospital procedure. Picture taking means we're expecting to have a good time and make memories. What better way to make a child feel comfortable then set the expectation of something being positive and fun? She did great and the best part about it is that she does NOT have kidney reflux.

January 24, 2010

Field Trip at Sara Lee Bakery

Jade's school class got to do a tour of the Sara Lee Bakery. They don't typically do tours for a school group (but they do for small groups). The kids were all really well behaved and they had good questions for the team that was taking us on the tours.

Everyone had to wear hair nets and earplugs. I didn't get any great pictures of the group with the blue hair nets but I tried. They were so darn cute with their uniforms and the hats. I think the pictures of the kids in the plant could have been some really fun promotional pictures for the plant, but they have a lot of really strict rules about photography.
We took groups of 8 or 9 and we had two staff members and two parents for each group. I actually think the adults were more in awe by the whole thing than the kids were. I was blown away by conveyor system. It reminded me of the truck plant in Kentucky. Just everything flows and it is amazing when you see the start of the process and then all of the bread packed up ready to go, it's just amazing all that goes in to it.
One of the machines pushed out 140 loaves of bread per MINUTE. The Grandma Sycamore bread machine only does about 30 per minute. The mixers are huge and can hold up to 2000 lbs of dough. The bread is moving constantly as it goes through the kneading and then the forming. Then it moves through the big steam and warming box to raise for 20 minutes. From there it goes into the oven, where it keeps moving through the oven for another 20 minutes. Once the bread is baked, it moves through the plant for an hour while it cools. Then once it is cool, it gets sliced and blown into bags.
The kids got to try the dough from Grandma Sycamore bread, they had several pieces of the bread and buns through the process and then they were all given a loaf to take home. Plus Burger King donated kids meals to them all.
One of the things that I thought was really neat was how hard the crust of the bread was when they put them in the bags. I actually liked them better with the hard crust, but they don't stay hard in the plastic bags.

The kids had a blast and really learned a lot.
Thanks, Sara Lee Bakery team for letting the first grade experience bread making in bulk. I think they will remember it for a long time.

January 22, 2010

"It's So Very Cheri" is a blog I frequent. Yesterday she posted about her three year old daughter and scissors. She refers to the mullet her daughter now wears with grace- so I just had to share Jadybug's adventures with the scissors when she was three. For those of you who aren't aware of the cut she gave herself, go here. Cheri was so blown away by the stories she received of other kids that today she posted about the top three. Any guesses on who won first?

January 20, 2010

Visiting Grandpa and Grandma Great

To conclude all of our Christmas festivities, we went up to visit Grandpa and Grandma Great. The girls love when we go visit them. They dance with the singing Santa, give big hugs to Grandpa and Grandma, eat chocolate and when they are lucky, they get to play an instrument.
While Scott was helping Grandma Great into the living room, Grandpa gave the girls their presents and said to go ahead and open them. Rather than me thinking about being thoughtful and waiting til Scott and Grandma got in the room, I scrambled to get to my camera. Bad mommy. Jade was just finishing opening hers when they got in.
Both girls LOVED their "Animal Clay" that doesn't dry out nor does it fall apart- unlike Playdoh.
There were multiple spontaneous hugs from Ivy to Grandma Great- unfortunately I didn't get any of them.
Jade asked Grandpa Great if they could play the trumpet. As an old band teacher, he is always willing to help out a budding musician. Ivy has a much harder time with it than Jade does but she still enjoyed it.
In case you were wondering how well she sounds while looking so cute, I included a little video clip. Enjoy!

January 18, 2010

Going on a hike...

Sometimes we tell the girls to play with themselves and to let us have a quiet adult conversation. We realize that when we do this, we might never know what messes we are going to find or what mischief they are going to get into. Although there was a mess it was awfully cute.
The girls decided to go on a pretend hike. They got their backpacks, their baseball caps, sweatshirts and flip flops- the perfect hiking shoes. They also put their pajamas in the big pill bug stuffed animal bags- because you have got to have those two things with you whenever you go on a hike. Think about it. You might need a stuffed animal that can double as a pillow when you put your pj's on. They also gathered purses and webkins. Again- they really know how to prepare for a hike.

To join in the fun, Scott let Jade use the GPS and Ivy used a "pretend flashlight." "Pretend" because there weren't any batteries in it.
Then the girls were off for their hike...

Jade used the GPS to help them get to the mailbox and Ivy shed little light on the path. Ivy got cold and came in before they made it to the mailbox.
Such funny little girls. I think this summer we'll have to get a bit more hiking in so that they learn the real things a little girl needs on a hike.

January 16, 2010

Think Someone Feels Cute?

Recently we decided to make Jade a little blonder. She was SOOO excited about it and has been looking forward to it for weeks. Our friend Brooke did it and did a wonderful job. It looks very natural and her cut is fantastic. We cut off at least 4 inches.

Ivy just got a little trim. She felt special and as you can tell, she feels adorable with her cute little cut.

Here's the final result on Jade. She's worn her hair down every day since. Finally her buzz cut has caught up with the rest of her hair.

January 14, 2010

Birthday Dinner at "OUR" Restaurant

Our little birthday girl has a very unfortunate time of year for a birthday. The 3rd of January is really difficult because we've just celebrated Christmas, New Year's Eve, New Year's Day and this year the Sanford Oyster Fry. Somewhere in there we need to make the day special for her. We had a yummy breakfast of German Pancakes and bacon with Grandpa Bob and Grandma Janet. She got one last birthday present. It was her little terrier webkin that she absolutely adores. That night, for dinner, we went to "our" restaurant with Grandpa. (Grandma was in California).
As much as we loved dinner- it was a little less than our perfect family dinner. Ivy got burned by the chef and Jade choked on her shrimp that the chef threw at her.
Neither girl ate much and they both ended up being hungry once we got home.
According to Ivy, she had a wonderful birthday.

January 12, 2010

Let's get this party started

The house was all dressed up and then we had the Sanford Family Annual Oyster Fry.
Everything went well- the kids got a long great. They had a wonderful time playing in the playroom, playing the Wii and the XBox and eating.
While the kids were doing well playing together, Scott headed up the team of cookers. There were two grills going with oysters being dipped and fried.

The menu was huge and delicious. We had...

fried oysters with homemade cocktail and tarter sauces
shake and bake chicken

sweet potato and brown rice casserole

roasted pototoes

crab and artichoke dip


and coleslaw.

For dessert we had pies, gingerbread and amish bread.
I'm so glad that we were able to have everyone get together for Oysters. It is probably the most anticipated and talked aobut tradition in Scott's family. And somehow, we haven't had the whole group together for 3 years.
Scott's grandparents, Jay and Vod, had an annual oyster fry for Grandpa Bob's birthday and Christmas. The menu always included Shake and Bake chicken and fried oysters. Jay and Vod both died years before I met Scott, but it has been a tradition that I am grateful they have continued.

January 9, 2010

All dressed up...

This is my house when it is dressed up for a holiday party...

...these are the tables all dressed up ready for a holiday meal...

...this is our Christmas tree that will still be up on the 9th of January...

...because that is how it works when you have a holiday party on the 2nd of January (oh, and work full time).

PS- adding a few additional pictures...

January 8, 2010

Ringing in the New Year

I love New Year's Eve at my parents. The food is always wonderful and the games are always enjoyable.
I love watching my family enjoy one another. There was no tension this season, no eye rolling, no grumpiness and no moral debates. I think it is because we all decided to just have fun and play games. For us, I think the biggest difference was that we just resolved to be okay with the girls being out WAY past their bedtimes. Typically, around 8:00 we are rushing to get on the road so that the girls can have their bedtime routine. Doing this means there is stress to make sure everything gets done quickly and smoothly. Plus there is the tension when the girls are whining about not wanting to go home yet so Scott and I both get cranky. Which, of course, makes everyone else cranky.
But this season we stayed late and the kids were exhausted and we paid for it every day, but it was worth it.
The morning of the Nutty Nutcracker, Jade came into our room and said that she was just too tired and that we were doing too many things at night. She asked if we could spend a night at home going to bed early. When she found out that we had the Nutcracker that night and New Year's Eve the next day, she asked if she could take a nap before the ballet. Sweet girl. Tired girl.
Anyway, back to New Year's Eve....
The evening was enjoyed by our family, my parents' neighbors- Gary and Jeanette, their youngest and his wife, the McBride family and briefly my aunt and uncle. It was a full party with great games and conversation.
I'm sure you recognize the game from previous posts.
The kids were excited to get their noise makers and their bubbly.
The adults prepared for the new year by turning on the TV to watch the ball drop.

Dad poured the glasses of bubbly.

And everyone celebrated.

Finally, around 3 in the morning, the two youngest were done celebrating. Mom and I joined them and crashed until the games were over- around 4:30.

Jade and Asher were pretending to be asleep but didn't score a sleep over.

It was a great night (especially since I finished with my end of quarter phone calls just after 7:00 PM- which isn't always the case).

The Birthday Party...

Sweet little Ivy combined her birthday with New Year's Eve. With end of quarter/year, New Year's Eve, Oysters and her birthday all being on the same weekend, we had to consolidate somewhere. She is so sweet that she didn't mind at all. She had a cake and got to open presents and that is really all that mattered to her.

She had so much fun opening presents and loved every single thing she got. And she was extra glad that Asher and Kieran were still in town for her "party".
Daddy presented her cake and she blew out the candles, one by one.
Happy Birthday little Ivy. We love you.

January 7, 2010

Dinner and the Ballet

When our family goes to Salt Lake, there are two restaurants that we always want to go to- The New Yorker and Greek Souvlaki. When kids are invited, Greek is the way to go. Everyone loves it and eats a ton.
Why were we in Salt Lake? The "Naughty Nutcracker" of course. Okay okay, it is really the "Nutty Nutcracker" but we all like the name Ivy came up with for it. This was our gift from my parents. It was a wonderful idea and a great activity for the whole family. Everyone had a good time and was entertained.
One thing that we neglected to prepare the kids for was men in tights. Why I didn't think about it before the ballet, I'll never know. But when the first male dancer came out in his light colored tights, all of the kids from 3-17 years old were giggling. "Look at his bum."
Oh heavens!! It is a good thing that we went to the nutty version of the Nutcracker because you were expected to laugh at parts, not parts. Half way through the second half, I moved next to Jade and would gently pinch her leg as a reminder that she shouldn't be laughing. It didn't work.
In the end, the ballet was a wonderful family activity and I'm glad we went. I don't think we've converted that family to ballets but at least they have all been to one.

January 6, 2010

An evening at the cottage

During the break, our family got to go up to my aunt and uncle's cottage. I always love going up there and escaping from the valley. The cottage will always be special for me, because that is where I said "I do" to Scott.
When Uncle built the cottage, he took every detail into consideration: the most impressive is his fireplace. Because I always love looking at it, I took a few pictures of it.
The kids had a great time up at the cottage working on their Christmas scrapbooks. (The scrapbooks and materials were part of their gift from my parents). I was amazed at how involved each of the kids were and how much effort they put into them.
The older family members played more carcassonne.

Here are the faces of the Carcassonne players. (Mac sat out this game).