Wednesday, February 15, 2012


Being sick for most of January and the early part of February and gutting my diet to get things managed led to some incredible discoveries for me. Specifically, that I am incredibly sensitive to both wheat and sugar. I had a really fascinating experience when I had wheat for the first time after a week of veggies, juicing, rice, chicken and really basic foods. I ate pizza with our family and felt drunk. Vision blurred, head woozy, not thinking straight drunk. I found the experience less disconcerting than I did revealing. Somehow, I had been having this reaction to certain foods and not noticed. I had a similar reaction to sugar after eating cupcakes on Monday night and I still can't wrap my head around how I could be so altered and not know it until having these experiences. I can honestly say that getting really sick was probably the best thing that could have happened. Without being so totally unwell, I might not have stumbled upon just how much these two very normal things affect me. (Ari, pretending Panda is her new baby, photo taken by Mina)

Backyard Camping

The girls have this game they like to play on a very regular basis. They like to go in to the backyard and then pretend they are in the wilderness. Another variation of the game is the like to pretend they are "back in the old days" as Ari puts it. Yesterday turned out to be a wonderful day for this game.All of our fire pit wood has gotten wet in the backyard over the winter, so I helped the girls fashion a makeshift camp fire with some little candles we had hanging around the house.This photo is a little strange. I took it through the window upstairs in the house. When the girls get playing the way they were yesterday, the last thing I am wiling to do is keep getting in the middle of it. Their make believe goes a lot more smoothly if I offer supplies and a little assistance and then get out of the way completely.
They stayed out on the trampoline until it got dark, then came inside and made up another game and on it went.
Now to backtrack a tad. Earlier in the morning, Mina and I made pancakes on a large electric griddle. I am finding that cooking offers so many wonderful learning opportunities. Not just the math of measuring, but chemistry and many other things that just come up. Whenever we get out this particular griddle the girls like to throw little bits of water on it and watch it dance as the heat turns it in to steam. Yesterday, Mina asked if she might pour a small cupful of water on the griddle. After assessing the safety of doing so, I got her a little medicine cup, like the ones you get with children's pain medicine. It was fun and surprising to see that larger amounts of water formed first small bubbles and then joined together to create large bubbles that danced across the griddle until the water evaporated completely. Also, the water left behind calcium and other minerals on the griddle. So much science in such an unexpected way.This is a new favorite activity of Ari's. I picked up some wooden skewers at the store for no particular reason. I thought they might make interesting craft supplies or building materials when we create stuff out of marshmallows. Ari wanted to try burning one in a candle and then went on to discover that if you burned it, then put the flame out in a little water, you create a writing implement.

Another Ari creation.
Mina wrote this yesterday. It is a sign she is going to post on the door to her room. No dogs? Well that is because Panda, who is still a puppy, has a strange addiction to the eyes of stuffed animals. She chews them out leaving a big hole. Not surprisingly, this is alarming to the girls. Finding a favorite stuffy with a hollow ocular cavity is not so fun. I am impressed with how quickly Mina is taking to writing and how much she just does it on her own. I am pretty satisfied with the way natural learning unfolds and the wonder and magic of it happening right in front of my eyes in ways I could neither plan, predict, or obviously control.

Monday, February 13, 2012

If you can't be with the one you love...

eat a cupcake. :)

John is headed to Texas tomorrow for 2 sleeps. We have been doing this travel thing for awhile now and this is the most effective way to count it out for kids. So we had our Valentine festivities this evening. No big party, just a whole lot of love.

I finished up a project I have been working on, just fast enough to hang it up for about 48 hours until I take down Valentine's and start feeling lucky.

Tomorrow is one of our 2 no screens day, two days a week we attempt to use no internet, television, or other screened device. So far, I totally love it. The kids have no clue we are even doing it which must say something about their needs being so totally met they don't miss the devices. That means I will be saying see ya later until Wednesday. Hope your love day is joyful.


Grandma Michele has been wanting to have the 4 local cousins over for a fashion show and lunch for as long as I can remember. Last week, it all came together, much to the delight of pretty much everyone involved.This is Grandma Michele my husband's mother. She had on a lovely jeweled blouse that seemed so fitting for Valentine's Day.
Mina, striking her pose. She refused to take off her pajama top and funny enough, it matched her dress.
This is my niece, isn't she cute.This is her sister, equally as cute.

Did I mention that this fashion show included a lot of interpretive dance? I should mention that because it did.Love these girls.
The fashion show was followed by a lovely brunch made by Grandma Michele and then a play date. Then that was followed by a day at the roller skating rink and then a sleep over and then a day at the swimming pool.

Monday, February 6, 2012


Saturday we had an unexpected visit from our local cousins. While John and his brother watched Star Trek. I am totally not kidding here.Spencer and Ari played Minecraft.

Seth built himself a fort.

And the 3 smaller girls did a lot of this.

No one wanted cousins to leave and Mina requested a sleepover, which was not possible this particular night. I think I see some in our future.

Friday, February 3, 2012


So the other day when we hydrated spitballs Ari put some of them in a concoction of orange juice and soy sauce. We wondered what might become of them and yesterday, I took a peek.

They took on the color of the mixture and they were lightly sticking together, which the other ones did not do. They also only hydrated about half size which we are assuming is from the salt content of the soy.

In other news, the girls built themselves a fort and then pretended to be in jail.

Adding to the randomness of this post I took a little stroll down memory lane this morning that was started by these socks.

I can't wear these socks without thinking of Donny Osmond. I was only 6 when the Osmond Show went off the air, I was not one of those pre-teen or teen girls who had posters in their rooms and wanted to marry Donny. I was much to young for that but I did remember his socks. I got to see a taping of the Osmond Show when I was 5. My big sister from the United Way took me. I remember very little of the actual show but I remember going and thinking it was pretty cool.

Then, in junior high that same big sister actually dated one of the architects of the Osmond Studios. Who lived in this incredibly cool house in Emigration Canyon that I had the good fortune of getting to stay in on various weekends when I would go visit her. I even spent a couple of whole weeks there in the summer which was pure heaven. No siblings, no grown ups all day, just me some books, some cd's, and miles and miles of hills to hike on. This would also be the time frame in which I would discover the authors Tom Robbins and Jean Auel both considered too mature for my age. I went on to read everything they wrote up until I was in high school. I still remember the mixture of guilt and pure joy with which I would read their books.

Flash forward to my high school years and the Osmond Studios were sold to a company who did team building exercises using obstacles courses. I can't remember whether I went there with the class officers group I was in our the at risk kids group I was in. I was never sure if I was in the at-risk kids groups because I was a class officer or because I was an at-risk kid. I never sought clarification and now well I just think it is funny.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Written on the errr...table

It isn't every day you go out to eat and upon sitting down find that your daughter's name is carved in to the table. And we totally did not do it, promise. Not our style.