Friday, June 27, 2008

overheard this morning at the breakfast table...

Wyatt: "When I grow up I'm going to be a daddy. And I'm going to marry a mommy."

Halle: takes a bite of Fruity Pebbles and nods in agreement

Wyatt: "Do you want to be the mommy, Halle?"

Halle: "We can't get married, Wyatt. Daddies have to marry someone that they meet while they are going on a walk. Or something like that."

Wyatt: "Oh. I love going on walks."

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Past, Present, & Future...

Once again, I am a total copycat. (Do I ever have an original idea? It would appear "not".) I kind of get tired of "tags", but my buddy Mandy had this one on her blog and I thought it was cute...a little different.

20 Years Ago...
1. I was baptized. I remember right after thinking, "Now all my sins are gone! I am never going to sin again." Then I told a lie on the way home from the church. I don't remember what it was about, just that I was mad at myself for not making it even half a day without blemishing my sinless soul!
2. We lived across the street from Discovery Elementary and two houses down from Alison (Reynolds) Dudley. We usually spent our summer days riding our bikes around the school or playing on my swingset or her trampoline. Or sometimes we played "invention" and we'd get out all of her mom's lotions, perfumes, soaps, etc. and mix it together pretenting we were inventing some new fabulous cream. Man...some of the things I did as a kid, I would kill my own kids for doing!
3. I would have just finished 3rd-Grade with my fav-o-rite teacher, Kathy Erskine. She was so good for my self-esteem. I just remember how loved she made me feel. I was lucky enough to have her for my 5th-Grade teacher as well!
10 Years Ago
1. I had just graduated from high school and couldn't wait to get out of town. All my friends had left.

2. One of my best friends at the time (Jay Haslem) was getting ready to go on his mission. We spent so much time together up to that point that I seriously wondered what I would do with myself after he was gone to Missouri. It was a lonely time for me. (And "no", we never dated. Some people find that hard to believe, but it's true, and whenever his name comes up with old high school peers I just have to laugh because they all seem to be soooo interested in a friendship from that long ago and ask me about it. So I'll just clear that up right now. Can't a boy and girl just be close friends???)

3. In September of that year I moved to the Wasatch Front and started going to "Travel Agent School". Boy, was that a lucrative decision, or what? It certainly got me places. NOT! ... I also started a job at Payless Shoe Store and HATED it. (Clarification: I don't hate Payless; just working there.)

5 Years Ago
1. Brett had just graduated from the "U" (Go RED!) with his bachelors and we were preparing to move to Arizona. One month after we moved, Brett's Grandpa and Grandma Taft passed away on the same day. (That is such a love story...maybe sometime I'll post about it.) When we'd said "goodbye" to Grandpa before leaving for Arizona, I'd had the distinct impression that would be the last time we'd see him alive. It made leaving Utah even harder. Here we are at a baseball game with him that year on the 4th of July.

2. Five years ago, Halle was two and her personality was really starting to shine through! She was talking a ton (and still does!). She was obsessed with "Dora" but especially "Blue's Clues". Later that year we found out she was getting a sibling.

3. Brett & I went to Alaska with my parents, siblings, and their spouses. It was gorgeous! And a little windy...

3 Years Ago

1. Wyatt was 1-year old and cute! It's a good thing he was so adorable, because the first 6-months he was a very difficult baby. Thankfully, he grew out of the fussy stage and became the happy boy we know now, at least during daylight hours. At one, he idolized his big sister and was already walking.

2. We took the kids to Disneyland and felt like kids ourselves. That trip was so good, it made us cry. I know that sounds emotional and stupid, but there's something sooo much better about being a parent taking your children to "the happiest place on earth".

3. We got our puppy, Coco. She was such a good dog. Oh...except for that whole "playing in the road" issue. * SIGH. * We miss ya, Coco.

1 Year Ago

1. We were getting ready to move into our new house. I still have a difficult time talking about that move. It was seriously one of the most stressful times in our lives. I get very emotional even thinking brings back all those feelings of anxiety and exhaustion! I don't think we've ever been that wiped out. On a happier note, we knew we had moved into a great ward when we met our new neighbors who came to help us move in.

2. Last summer Carson was just starting to sit up and he was also enjoying a hot summer wearing a cranial remodeling orthosis (molding helmet) to help reshape his head from plagiocephaly.3. Halle was already planning her 6th birthday party, which was still over 2 months away. It turned out to be a great party, though, and I think it helped her make some friends in her new neighborhood. Here's the birthday bunch at Build-A-Bear (I'd highly recommend them for a easy! And not as expensive as you'd think!).

So Far This Year

1. For the first time in years (since the 5th Grade when a classmate told me I had a "bubble-butt"), I'm learning to be comfortable in my own skin and accept myself for who I am. Of course, I see a lot of room for improvement, but I think my outtake on it is so much healthier than it's ever been. Much of this new perspective comes from having a husband who goes out of his way to make me feel good about myself. Thanks, babe. You keep wearing those rose-colored glasses and we'll be just fine!

2. I've got twelve students lined up for piano lessons which will start in the fall. After an 18-month absence, I'm really looking forward to teaching again! I miss my students in Arizona...what a stellar group of kids! This picture was taken at the 2006 Christmas Recital, just a couple weeks before Carson was born.

3. So far this year, I've had my first three appointments with a chiropractor and several more forecasted. The jury is definitely still out on how I feel about chiropractic theories, but I'm willing to give it a shot.


1. The kids had swimming lessons, where Halle is improving on her front stroke and Wyatt is learning to have "noodle-arms and legs" when he is floating. My friend, Heather, has her girls taking lessons at the same time so we have a great time visiting while we wait! After swimming lessons, Carson had his 18-month check-up, complete with two pokes in the legs (poor guy). He cheered right up the minute the nurse handed him a sucker, though.

2. John, Dix, and Heidi came over after dinner and treated us to chocolate chip milkshakes: YUM! We had a great visit!

3. Halle helped me sort laundry. She is a great helper and has such a desire to be my "right-hand gal", but I'm not the best at letting her help. We were talking about this during the Relief Society lesson on Sunday...sometimes we have to be willing to take on the "extra work" that comes with letting kids "HELP". I have to remind myself that someday I'll be begging her to help around the house...

Today (Tuesday)

1. The kids enjoyed their weekly CRAFT CAMP with their friends. Thanks, Heather...they loved the patriotic things you planned. The frames they painted are proudly being displayed on the countertop!

2. Brett played "Mr. Mom" during dinner while I went to my chiropractor appointment. What a guy! And he even got the kids to eat all their dinner!

3. I went grocery shopping and once again nearly had a breakdown at the register when I saw the total. The prices of gas and groceries are killing our budget! I bet we pay nearly 30% more on the same groceries we've been buying for years! I've even been contemplating getting a part-time job at Target or Wal-Mart so we can get a discount on our weekly grocery bill. I know I'm not the only one feeling the pinch of the current economic status!

Tomorrow (Wednesday)

1. Halle & I will have her piano lesson. She's playing the song from Titanic right now. She sounds pretty good, but she plays it all the time! I'm starting to feel like "My Heart Will Go On" and on, and on, and on...

2. Hopefully I will be putting stacks of neat, clean, folded laundry away. Believe it or not, my biggest problem with laundry is not the washing or folding. It's the putting away. How pathetic is that? Sometimes we will start another round of laundry-washing and my baskets will still be full of clean clothes from the previous week, just waiting to be lovingly put away.

3. At 5:30 there is a puppet show ("The Brave Princess") at the Bountiful Library presented by the Utah Puppet Theatre that I'd like to take the kids to.

Next Year

1. Halle will be entering 2nd Grade, hopefully at the new Foxboro Elementary school or Wasatch Peak Charter school (she's 13th on the list for 1st-Grade...a better spot than we'd thought she'd get, but still so far away from getting in).

2. Wyatt potentially may be entering Kindergarten (Holy Cow!). We'll see how prepared he'll be after a year of preschool at Foxtales preschool. We're so excited for this to start in only a couple months...he's going to love preschool! It's just that he's so small for his's hard to imagine he might be a kindergartner in one year! And to top that off, Carson will be 2 1/2....WILD!!!!!!

3. We are crossing our fingers that next year we will be able to replace our crappy tile floors and put a closet into our playroom. Also, our backyard will hopefully have a few shrubs and trees planted! It's only money, right?????? (Yikes!)

Thursday, June 19, 2008

"Mega" Music!

I'm sick. Very sick. I've self-diagnosed myself with MPADD (Music Player Attention-Deficit Disorder). I can't leave it alone more than a week before tweaking, deleting, rearranging the songs! So I've done it again and this time is just another demonstration of my crazy musical moods. It's been going on for about five weeks now. Let me give you a history. Five weeks ago, I was in the mood for Movie Soundtrack songs. The week after that was Jazz...Tony, Ella, Frank, Etta, all the greats. Next came country. For some reason I was big into Trace Adkins. That mood was followed by a week of Broadway (hence, all the Kristin Chenoweth songs in addition to some selections from "Jekyl & Hyde" and "Beauty & The Beast"). Now!, my friends, it's time to step into my time machine because my mood at present is all about
THE 80'S!
Yes, dudes, transport yourself back into the time of big hair , glitter, bleached blonde, tight jeans, heavy makeup, shoulder pads, adidas jump suits, Ray-Bans sunglasses, and of course, the Brat Pack and all the Coming-Of-Age films such as
Sixteen Candles
or, my personal favorite, Better Off Dead.
Take heart...I didn't fill my playlist completely with bands from the 80's, but you'll find your fair share of Boston, Journey, Survivor, Foreigner, and Cutting Crew. There's even Carly Simon to pay tribute to all you Working Girl fans!

Monday, June 16, 2008

2008 Kremin Campout

Driving home last night I figured I was just about the luckiest gal on the planet. My family is so cool! They are the funnest, greatest people to be around! We just finished our annual camping/reunion with my parents, siblings, and their families. Our family is getting so huge! I think we're in the sixties or something like that in numbers. And we just keep getting bigger with at least 1-2 babies born nearly every year. Not everyone could make it, which is expected but still disappointing, however we still managed a good time.

Our location couldn't have been better. We were at Iron Springs,
about 40 minutes outside of Vernal.

The weather was perfect and best of all: NO BUGS! (I am a Mosquito Magnet. I must have good blood.) For the 2nd year in a row we rented a trailer, which makes camping with children so much easier! The older two were delighted as our rental came with BUNK BEDS this year. And you know what? No one fell out of them, which was a pleasant surprise!
breakfast in the camper & havin' fun in bunk beds

This year marks a big birthday for my mom, so we surprised her by scrapbooking all of her pictures (and believe me...she's got quite the collection!). My niece's husband, Matt, also made an awesome video of picture of her with some fun music. We hooked Matt's laptop up to a generator with an extension cord and we all gathered 'round to watch it.

Here are some pictures of the fun event. You'll notice a lot of them are from Saturday afternoon when our family did something new this year, but something which I have a feeling will become a yearly tradition: IRON CHEF. It was a blast, even though my team lost, THE DEEN DREAM TEAM (each team was named after a different Food Network Chef). We had 6 teams. Two for each course of the meal: Main, Side, and Dessert. Even though there were winners, there definitely weren't any losers. All the food provided a fabulous lunch. And you can't beat the presentations! Just to give you an idea, one presentation included a brief tribute to the troops and acknowledgement of the flag, including "The Pledge of Allegiance".

For our potato side, we did "Thrice-the-Spice Roasted Potato Wedges". Basically, baked potato wedges with 3 different kinds of seasonings. Watch out for the Jamaican Jerk seasoning. Spicy! But cooled down quickly with the yummy dips. 3 different sour cream dips: Homestyle Ranch, BBQ Blue Cheese, and Cilantro Lime. Tasty! The men in the family (a.k.a. the "Bloato Brothers") were the judges and it was such a riot watching them taste each dish, write down the score, and then "cleanse" their palate to get ready for the next dish. Brett gave our side dish a thumbs-up, of course!
The "Bloato Brothers" Judges even made
little comments like, "Oh, that seasoning is divine"
or "The consistency is so creamy". Very funny! Enjoy the pix...there's lots!
Above: Here's the DEEN DREAM TEAM putting on
our "fighting faces" during the "opening ceremonies".
The orange poster was our "sign" to help with our presentation.
'Don't know if you can read it, but if you can,
you've gotta read it with a Paula Deen accent.
I love Bill's face here (on the right in the straw hat). I think he'd just eaten
a Jamaican-spiced potato wedge. HOT! See him "sucking" in air?!
Fawn & Wyatt show off the asian-inspired Potato Salad Wonton.
Sounds different, but was SUPER good! And it won!
The winning team (Team FLAY) and their prize-winning creation.
I think their prize was an already-opened bag of balloons.
Halle & Wyatt were anything but "bumps on a log"
Nearly every person tried hula-hooping.
I don't think anyone under fifteen was able to do it!
"The democracy will cease to exist when you TAKE AWAY from those who are willing to work AND GIVE to those who would not."

Thomas Jefferson