Sunday, June 29, 2008

I'm a Dork

Try again...you're all invited. :)

Recipes from the Pickle Boat

OK, my new recipe blog is up and running! You can either click here or use the link on the right of my blog.

I'll try to add at least one new recipe per week, but would love to add your submissions as well!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Want Ad

OK QC-ers...I am on the lookout for a new family photographer. When we lived in Ut we used our wedding photographer for family pictures and he did an amazing job(and didn't charge us...long story), and when we lived in Murrieta we had a girl do our photos last spring and I made an appointment to do some winter photos with her...but then we moved and that got thrown out the window. We've done our share of blah JC Penney pics but I'm so over that. So....referrals please? I want someone who has a studio but will also do pics in different locations. I'd like to find someone that we can start using from now on. And I'd love for them to be family friendly, really skilled, and....decently priced. Thanks in advance!!!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Hallelujah

If you haven't read my previous post below, you need to read that one before reading this, for it to make sense.

So, when I went to pick up Emma today - I was terrified. I was so scared that all of that previous drama was going to be in vain and I would look really stupid. I even hesitated a little right before I walked in to take a breath(I know, I'm lame). When I walked in, I didn't see Mr. David, but Emma ran up to me with a huge smile on her face. I asked her how she was today. Her response was, "Mom! I was ONE HUNDRED good today!" A different teacher came over and said, "Mr. David isn't here right now, but he wanted me to tell you that she was completely turned around today - a 180 from before." Seriously I think my heart leaped out of my chest. I know it's ridiculous but I just felt elated. I am so so proud of her and I think I told her that maybe 150 different times. When that girl really wants to, she can be such an angel.

Stage Mom Here I Come!

Ugh. That's the best word to describe what I'm about to tell you.

This summer we put Emma in a Theater camp at the local high school. They meet Mon-Thurs from 9am to 12pm. They are separated into small groups and each group is assigned a short Disney play to perform on the last night. It's not a big production - just a few songs and scenes per group. They don't even wear costumes, just camp T-shirts with maybe a few accessories to distinguish each character.

Emma was chosen to play the part of Abu from Aladdin. I was so excited for her. It's the perfect part for her. She gets to run around on stage like a little monkey. I thought that whoever chose her part must have really gotten a sense of who my child is. She actually had quite a few parts and was really doing a good job of remembering everything. She loves drama camp and is so excited for the performance(next Tues).

So, yesterday when I went to pick her up I asked her to ask her teacher if they had a lost and found, as she had left a barrette there the previous day. She asked, he said no, but they'd keep an eye out for it. Then he turned to me and said, "Oh! And just so you know, we had to switch her play." Here's a general idea of the rest of the conversation:

Me: Oh? (turning to Emma) That's a bummer!
Emma: I get to be a giraffe!!
Me: A giraffe? That's fun.
Mr. David: Yeah there were just a few issues, and I wasn't there at the time, but she should be fine in the other play.
Me: (to Emma) Are you OK with that?
Emma: Yeah! I love Lion King.
Me: (to Mr. David) Well, as long as she's happy, I'm fine.
Mr. David: Yeah there was just a little problem, but we talked to Emma and she understands.
Me: OK, well thank you.
(up to this point I'd been thinking there was a problem with her play and that every child in her group had to switch. I thought Mr. David was trying to give me as little info as he needed to to protect someone's privacy or something)

Mr. David: (to Emma) And we're still going to have a stuffed monkey in the play to represent you, so you're not disrespected.

Ummm...he said this as we're walking out the door, so I kind of processed it after we were out. In other words...Emma had been misbehaving and he had to put her in a different play because of her behavior. HUH? Gee, Mr. David, thanks for explaining things to me clearly. And I honestly don't think he would have said anything had Emma not approached him about the barrette. So I asked Emma to tell me more and finally got the whole story out.

Apparently the previous day, or maybe even the day before that, as they were getting ready to leave Emma had been spitting at Aladdin(Keegan). He threatened to tell on her and then apparently did because she said two of the teachers came over, but she didn't remember what they said. The next morning(yesterday) Mr. David had came to her and told her that because of her spitting she needed to be moved to a different play and she could play whatever part she wanted to play. Are you kidding me?? She was so excited to pick the giraffe - it was not a punishment at all!! Not to mention the fact that I purposely put her in this camp - with small groups - for her to get some acting experience - not stand around in the background being a giraffe!!!

The two things that upset me the most were:

1. I was not kept in the loop at all. It is one thing for my child to act up and then to have a consequence because of it. I will be the first to say that Emma has some behavior issues. And I am all for negative consequences. But if it is such a problem that she needs to be removed from those people - then I need to be made aware of it. Mr. David didn't appear to even want to tell me about it. And the way he told me made no sense! I honestly had no idea - till we left - that my child had actually done something wrong. He was probably scared of my reaction(who can blame the guy) but he still needed to communicate better with me.

2. Letting Emma choose whatever part she wants is rewarding her behavior - not punishing it. When I mentioned to her that I was going to talk to Mr. David about it again, she was upset that she might not get to be the giraffe again. I think his whole purpose in moving her wasn't meant to be a punishment, it was more meant to just prevent the situation. But what's to stop her from doing it again, now? Now that she knows she will get rewarded for it!

Anyway, I was very glad that when I talked to Ian about it, he agreed. He is usually the more forgiving, merciful one between us and most times finds a way to calm me down and realize that it's no biggie. But he stuck with me on this one and even went so far to suggest that I ask for a refund.

So I called the office as soon as I got home and left a message for Mr. David. Never got a call back so I decided that the next morning(today) I'd go early and try to talk with him. Here is how much I HATE confrontation: I slept terribly last night. I kept waking up, thinking of what I would say to him and how he might possibly react. Also, this morning as I was planning what I would say - I kept getting butterflies in my stomach. And now as I'm thinking of how our conversation went, I feel sick to my stomach. My biggest fear was that I would start crying. Usually when my words are fueled by anger or frustration - they don't come out right. I don't make any sense, I start to confuse things and then just burst into tears because I can't accurately get my point across. So...I said a bunch of prayers, packed the kids up, and headed out this morning.

(wow this is a long post)

When we arrived, Mr. David was walking up the same time I was. I asked if he had a minute and could I speak to him. At first I don't think he knew I was talking to him. When he realized I was - he had to physically gear himself up for this conversation. I think he dislikes confrontation just as much as I do. He put his stuff down and took a deep breath. I sent Emma inside. Here's our confrontation(roughly):

Me: So I guess yesterday when we talked, I didn't really understand that it was Emma's behavior that caused her to be switched. I know you said you weren't there at the time, but I'm just trying to understand what exactly happened.
Mr. David: Well, she was spitting, which is unacceptable, so we chose to remove her from that situation.
Me: OK That's what Emma said. She said it was near the end of class?
Mr. David: To be honest, I really don't know when it was.
Me: OK I understand that her behavior was causing a problem, and I'm not angry or upset with you, it's just that moving her to a different play really didn't do any good because she is so excited to be a giraffe.
Mr. David: Well it wasn't just that one time, she'd been acting up and wasn't paying attention, was distracted.
Me: OK That's totally in character for her and I understand how that could be a problem, but why not give her a time out, or make me aware of the problem so that I can help deal with it?
Mr. David: Honestly, I just thought it was best to move her to a different play.
Me: I guess that's what upsets me - because she went from having a good part and getting some great experience, to standing in the back being a giraffe with no acting experiences.
Mr. David: Oh she'll still get acting experience.
Me: Are you sure you can't just give her another chance? Especially now that I've been made aware of it and can help in the discipline?
Mr. David: I just really don't feel comfortable doing that.
Me(at this point I could see that he really wasn't budging so I[embarrassingly] pulled the manipulation card): Well my husband is just really upset because we paid all of this money and specifically chose this camp because of the small groups and the chance she would get to have a part and get some acting experience. We didn't pay all of this money for her to be a giraffe in the back of a play.
Mr. David(with a little bit of attitude): Well if you really want to I can move her back.
(I actually thought I didn't hear him right so I asked him to repeat himself and he did - with even more attitude)
Me: OK great, well I've talked to her and if she acts up again, even one time, now that I've been made aware of it - I am totally OK with her being moved back to a giraffe. I just wanted her to have a chance again, now that I've talked to her about it. Thank you so much and really, please tell me if it becomes a problem again.

UGH!!! I HATE CONFRONTATION!! But, thankfully, I was able to get my point across and she was given a second chance. I did talk again with her and made it clear that if she didn't pay attention, keep her hands to herself, and do what she was supposed to do, then she wasn't going to get another chance, and she would have consequences...not only just switching her to a different play. So she went and apologized to Mr. David who said something like, "OK Honey, but you and I need to have a little talk about it." And I am very glad he did that. I very much want my child to be held accountable for her behavior, especially since I worked so hard to get her another chance. I just feel really bad for being the typical stage mom and forcing him to put my child in a better part(again).

So...if you actually read all of this, I'm sorry. I just needed to vent and get all of my thoughts out so that I could stop dwelling on how yucky and awful I feel for being so mean. I just hope that Mr. David doesn't hold it against Emma, and I really hope she can get her act together(no pun intended) and have a great time.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Mckenna's Day

This post is mainly for my sister who didn't get to come for Mckenna's special day - so there are lots of pics :)

Mckenna's birthday started with Ian taking Mckenna to the store to pic out her breakfast cereal(Somes family tradition): Ian also took the day off from work(thank you!!!), which was wonderful. We got showered and dressed, picked Emma up from drama camp, and headed off to Chuck E. Cheese's. Enjoy all of the pics!

I had to pry David off.


This ride scared David a little...




The best part of this video is at about 8 seconds when Mckenna gets mad. What also makes this video better is knowing that when the day was all done and Mckenna was getting ready for bed, I asked her what her favorite part of the day was and she chose when Chuck E. came out and they walked all around the restaurant. Coulda fooled me!
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Half of the party kids:
The other half(a little scared of the huge mouse. Who can blame them?):

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She had a great day and especially loved all of her spiderman toys. She couldn't even pick a favorite, but I will say that this child definitely scored!
She said in this picture Mr. Potato Head is saying, "Well?"
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Monday, June 23, 2008

Happy 4th Birthday Mckenna!!

My sweet baby girl is 4 years old!!!(well, not technically...her birthday is tomorrow, but tomorrow is a busy day and I didn't know if I'd have time to post this). Looking back at pictures of her makes me sad. She's so big already. She still talks like she did when she was two, so I guess I still felt like she was this little squishy thing with huge eyes and hair that stood straight up off her head. She is such a huge part of the peace in our home. At times, she can be so sweet and at other times - such a little stinker. She always knows when I'm stressed or angry and tries extra hard to be silently sweet, obedient, and stay out of my way. Sometimes she'll even sneek a kiss in on those times. She is a little snugglebug and has been from the moment she was born. She has also always had a huge set of lungs which we discovered a couple of hours after she entered the world.


Mckenna's favorites:
  • grapes
  • singing
  • milk
  • Spiderman
  • morning snuggles
  • listening to the same songs over and over
  • chocolate milk
  • ice cream
  • swimming with her mask and snorkel
  • loving her brother
  • tormenting her sister
  • her cousin Katie
  • dancing
  • talking on the phone
  • watching shows with mommy
  • Troy from High School Musical
  • making silly faces("grandpa taught me")
  • wearing sunglasses(I think she thinks nobody can see her)
    taking pictures
  • being the sweetest and funniest girl ever!

Happy Birthday to my big four year old!!!

OK so I realize it's not perfect(or anywhere near perfect), but here's her cake I just finished:

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Haircuts!!

Yesterday we took the whole family for haircuts(well, I went, but didn't get my hair cut...), and I am sad to say that David has lost his curls. What a sad day! My baby now looks like a big boy! I had to do it, though - his hair was literally in his eyes. But he was so good! He sat patiently the entire time. He did have kind of an annoyed and confused look on his face, but he was perfectly still!



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All done! Sorry, I didn't get a before pic of Ian, so this is all you get.
Kenna before her trim:
After(I love that smile):
Emma is usually the first to volunteer for everything but she wanted to be last. She said she was nervous. My aunt, Tina usually does it for us in her garage and the kids sit on a skateboard on the chair, but she lives all the way back in Cali...kinda far for a cut. I got her to be excited, though. I told her she could have some layers put in her hair and she would look so pretty and so much older. Well she was all for it, then! Before:
After: Here they are after church today:


I got the idea for Kenna's hair at this awesome site that my friend, Kelli emailed to me.
This kid makes the best faces.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Best Foods Restaurant

Emma has decided that when she grows up she is going to have a restaurant. It will be called Best Foods. Here is her future menu:


Breakfast Menu $1:

Chocolate cantaloupe
Chocolate strawberries
Chocolate milk with chocolate strawberry flavor
Dessert for breakfast: chocolate mint heart candy

Lunch Menu - free:

Chocolate Enchiladas(with 80 gallons of chocolate)
Candles on the tables - best smelliest
Chocolate apples with 100 gallons of chocolate

Dinner Menu $0.01:

Chocolate chicken(with 200 gallons of chocolate)
Chocolate Macaroni
Lemonade
Dessert: 100 double chocolate cookies

Can I put my reservation in now?

Monday, June 9, 2008

Cheese!


I love this sweet boy so much. He is at such a fun age and his little personality is starting to burst. He is such a little comedian, but yet still gets shy. If you catch him dancing he'll stop and cover his face but then do it again until you look. He loves peek-a-boo, kisses, dancing, attention, singing, making animal and car noises, and attempts to say just about every word you ask him too. He also thought it was hilarious that his picture was on the computer just now. He said, "Whatiszat?" I said, "That's David." And he cracked up. Too funny. He's the most entertaining late at night when he gets slaphappy.






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I have a little self starter on my hands. "If mom won't help me, I'll do it myself."

Wow

Aparently the gas station has a cap at $100. Who knew? I guess I've never hit $100 before. Sickening.

Hawaii

Finally!! Here's my Hawaii post. I'll try to keep the descriptions brief, as there are sooo many pictures(and this is only a tiny tiny portion...)

We left Wednesday morning with our good friends from college, Burke and Amber. My sister Shannon, and her husband Jed were so awesome and watched our kids all week(thank you!!). We flew to the island of Oahu and stayed at the Hilton Grand Vacations in Honolulu. I wasn't to impressed with Honolulu right away...it's too city-like. But we were very pleased with our hotel. This was the view that greeted us from our balcony:



We then stocked up on groceries at Food Land and came back to have dinner at Benihana...yummm...
Here's Burke and Amber:
We went back to our room and the boys decided to go for a little swim. The next morning we headed up to Laie to the LDS Temple, BYU, and the Polynesian Cultural Center. This is my favorite picture from the whole trip - it's by the parking lot for the temple: I actually tried not to post too many of the scenic pictures because we took a LOT, but I couldn't resist the above pic. I might do another post of all the cool plants and beautiful island, but this post has way too many pictures already.



After the temple we had a picnic at a beach just north of the temple and PCC. The boys got some more snorkeling in while Amber and I got some sun. The only pictures I got from this beach were of this cool boat. :)
After lunch we headed over to the PCC:





Ian scored a hat made from coconut tree leaves that gave us plenty of laughs:







We ate too much(no I am not pregnant):





The next day we spent on the west side of the island, mostly on the North Shore(which is actually the Northwest shore, but whatever). First we popped into the Dole Plantation and had some fresh pineapple and Dole Whips...yum. Someone there pointed out that Ian looked like a pineapple, himself. We concurred.






After that we went to Waimea Valley Audubon center and saw TONS of gorgeous plants. Amber is the tiny thing at the bottom of this huge tree:



For you LOST watchers, this is the waterfall that Sawyer and Kate swam in and found the dead bodies strapped into airplane seats with the suitcase. Creepy. But very nice.




After our mile and a half walk we'd worked up an appetite and Amber had read about an awesome shrimp shack: Romy's *drool*

We brought our shrimp to Shark Cove:

And had a great time snorkeling. We only had about 1/2 hour of snorkeling but it was great!
We had to rush back through traffic to make it to our sunset dinner sailboat cruise. By the time we got there the boys were exhausted.
Here's the view of our hotel from the boat. Ours is the one in the middle left, just above the white sailboat.

I think someone spiked our drinks because we got a little loopy on the boat:



We watched an awesome sunset...

And our hotel put on some fireworks...
Here's the boat we went on:
The next morning we woke up early and headed over to Hanauma Bay for the best snorkeling spot in Oahu. We defied death quite a few times and made it out with each person having at least 1 battle wound...but great snorkeling! I still have to develop the underwater camera pics.
We went back to the hotel for lunch. Then the guys went golfing and Amber and I went shopping. That night we split up to go on dates. Ian and I had what Ian described as "The best service I've ever had in my entire life." And he was serious. That waiter was so awesome. We even spoke to the manager about him because he was so great. I love Hawaii!
On our last day we hit up the swap meet and Pearl Harbor. Both Ian and Burke took WAY too many photos, so here's the Reader's Digest version:



Sorry for the huge onslaught of pictures, but I had to put them all since I'm a slacky scrapbooker. We had such an amazing time. Ian was ready to move there. I was ready to go home and kiss my babies, and then move there as a family. Thanks, Jardines, for a super fun vacation! We couldn't have gone with a better couple! Mahalo!! (Or, as Amburger says, Maloha! *jinx, you owe me a coke*)