We're livin' it up on the U.P. - that's Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Punkie is 6 and LOVED Kindergarten! Isaboo is 2 and she's a smiley whirl wind. We also call her Busy-Isi. This year we welcomed little Lorenzo to our family.

Life is great!

Friday, November 30, 2012

I am so thankful!

There are so many things for which I am so grateful.
Before November is officially over, in a few hours, I wanted to express my gratitude for a few things. 
(I'm keeping these short, I could go on and on, but, no, short and sweet.)

#1 Nathan
He is such a loving and supportive husband. 

#2 Being a Mother
I love my girls and I love being their mother.

#3 I love Jesus Christ and being a member of His church and having the knowledge of the Gospel.
"I know who I am. I know God's plan. I'll follow Him in faith."

#4 Having goodly parents
Both mine and Nathan's.

#5 Having a steady income.
A job is such a great blessing.

That's it for tonight. 
Like I said, I could go on and in great detail...but, I'll leave it at that....
wait.
One more.

I'm so grateful that NaBloPoMo is OVER!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Headless Isabelle

This was at my Aunt Mary's house this summer. 

Isi had just started scooting head first on her back. 

Marley and I came out of the bathroom and found headless Isabelle!

Marley had to join her. 





It was funny!
No matter how much she moved and wiggled she could not get her head out from under the bed. 

We did rescue her...eventually. 

You gotta love babies and how they get trapped.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Full Moon

It's a full moon tonight!

My mom has a tradition of calling her grandchildren when there is a full moon and she howls at the moon with them.

When I was a missionary in Montana, I made my companions howl at the moon with me. 

Since, we see the moon first over here in Mich. and grandma doesn't see it until after we are in bed, we call her when we see it. 

Last year, grandma had a full-on Moon Party with her grandchildren in Utah. 
She even gave them assignments before hand. 
One had to make a moon decoration, for the party.
One had to do a report and make a poster on the phases of the moon. 
One had to read Goodnight Moon to everyone. 
I can't remember all of the assignments because we weren't able to be there,
but they had Moon Pies and then watched a movie outside and had it projected onto the shed in the backyard. 
Doesn't that sound FUN!?!?!

source

This summer, since we were not available to celebrate the full moon while we were in Utah, my mom took us all star gazing. 
I think there was a meteor shower going on at the time, but I think we might have been on the wrong side of the Wasatch Mountains to see it? Or something?

But we did see some shooting stars!

Grandma brought along Starbursts!!!
And donuts.
And chocolate milk.
And glow in the dark necklaces for a ring toss game...
and then everyone got a glow necklace after the game!!

We brought blankets and chairs.

My sister Liz was using an app on her phone to name and point out constellations. 

It was SO fun!





 I edited this one below...but I kinda like the dark ones....cuz it was getting dark. 





 


Last month, our little family had a moon party. 
I made homemade pizza....
cuz, "When the Moon hits your eye like a biga' pizza pie, that's amore!" 
We looked that song up on youtube and watched Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis sing it in Moonstruck. 
Marley LOVED that and sings the song all the time now. 
We had OREOs and then called Grandma and howled. 
It was so fun!


I think the full moon is a great excuse to have a party every month! 
And when there is a blue moon month...twice in a month!

So far we haven't had a Moon party every month but we do manage to eat a sleeve of OREOs from the Family Sized boxes every full moon. ;-)

Owoooooooo......Owo...Owo...Owooooooo

Robin....if  you're reading this....next full moon!  
Party at my house!

Owoooooooo......Owo...Owo...Owooooooo

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Nice day! Eh?

I'm always so relieved to find new, easier, low stress ways to get things done around the house.
Quickly, efficiently and organized.

I feel like this comes easier to others.

When I've had jobs...like outside of the house, that is how I roll.
Quick, efficient, organized.

You'd think my house was perfect!
Always, clean.
Always, organized.
No.

My babe is 7 months old and we are just figuring out a nice daily schedule.
Namely, a nap schedule. 
Cuz, lets face it, that's when I get the most done.

I've noticed recently that Isi's best nap is in the morning. 
It's the longest. 
Usually from around 9-ish to 11-ish. 

And she is the crankiest right around the time I am trying to get dinner made and on the table. 

So, today I was a genius and during Isi's morning nap I prepped all the ingredients for our soup we had for dinner. 

AND I started salmon chowder and put it in the fridge for tomorrow night! 

Tonight, all I had to do was cook up ingredients that were already, washed, peeled, and chopped. 
Just threw it all together. 

Tomorrow, all I gots to do is heat the start of the soup and add the cream corn, salmon and evapt'ed milk. 

I think I might try this everyday...takes so much pressure out of the end of the day, when everyone is tired.


*******

ALSO

This week I officially changed laundry day from Monday to Tuesday.
Mondays were stressing me out. 
I wanted all the laundry done and put away by dinner. 
I wanted dinner on the table when Nathan got home.
And I wanted us to clean up dinner and then have Family Home Evening. 

But, most Mondays the laundry wasn't put away. 
Dinner was barely on the table in time. 
And I wasn't ready for FHE so the dishes would wait til the next day. 

So, laundry day is now Tuesday and it worked out perfectly today!

******

If anything is "missing" which in our house usually just means miss placed, 
Marley's serious and heart felt suggestion is,
"Maybe rats took it?"
or
"Maybe rats carried it away?"

I am seriously SO glad we don't have rats!  Ick!

********

Isi's most favorite time of day is when Nathan walks in the door. 
She is IN LOVE with him. 

Her second favorite part of the day is when Marley gets home from school.

Her LEAST favorite time of day is when she wakes up from her morning nap and realizes she is home alone with boring ol' mom.

Her favorite thing to do is dance with Marley. 
She always looks for me as they are moving and sort of spinning and if we make eye contact she smiles so big and then can't stop laughing. 

She still has no teeth...not even one little crest of a tooth anywhere in that mouth. 
I'm not complaining though. 

She hasn't started crawling.
She rolls everywhere and scoots backwards.
She gets stuck a lot!

She loves to be held in the standing position or held by her hands standing against the couch.

She does get up on her hands and gets into a crawling position with her knees...but nothing yet. 

She has been sitting for long periods of time for awhile now.
Today, she sat up all by herself!
She was in the crawling position and then just leaned to the side, swung her right arm to her side as she sat on her bum and used her left arm to sit straight up!!!

It was awesome and surprised us all! 

********

That's about it for today! 

Monday, November 26, 2012

Remember this little peanut?







She's my Brown Eyed Girl.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Our Church

We are members of
Official website: http://www.lds.org

We are also known as Mormons.
Another official website: http://mormon.org/people

I think most people we know, know that Nathan and I were born and raised Mormons 
or Latter-day Saints (LDS). 

But, just sayin' so any lurkers that do not know us personally....now know we are Mormons. 

Since only my parents have been able to come way out East and way up North to visit us, so far,
I thought I would give you all a virtual tour of our church building! 

We are a Branch of the church. 
A Branch is a small congregation. 
A Ward is a larger congregation. 
Nathan and I have spent the majority of our lives in Wards. 
So, this has been a new experience for us. 

Here we go with the tour.
This is where we meet.
Yes, really!  We meet in Arlington Plaza.

There are several businesses in this building because it IS an office building...but we are a church!
And we meet here....see the bottom of the left column?

This is where we park. The meters are not enforced on Sunday, 
even though they say they are enforced 7 days a week. ;-) 
 We enter at the door just on the other side of our car in the picture above. 
But, there are two other doors where you can enter the building.

 See, here's is strong Marley, opening the heavy door, and going in.
(These first few pictures were taken on Nov. 13th, because that is when I originally had the idea...but, I didn't get all the pictures I wanted. I only mention this because there is now snow everywhere. Which you will see at the end of the post. Just clarifying so nobody is confused.)

Here is the hallway right inside the door. 

Toward the end of the hall, on the left, is a cute little chair and table setting.  
 Just beyond these chairs, we turn left. 

The first door on the right is our main door. 
There are four other doors, (to the right, beyond the chairs) to get into the church from the hallway, but I only took a picture of this one because it's the only one with the church logo on it. ;-)

Here it is again with the blinds open. I like that you can see our little lobby or entry room. 

On the left (you can't see it but,) there is a little table with flowers, tithing slips and envelopes. 
Right by that table is the mobile chalk board/white board. 
Then a classic church lobby chair. 
Then a classroom.


This is the Youth Sunday School Class and the Young Women room.
Nathan teaches the Youth Sunday School Class.
This room is SMALL...9' by 10'.
I know because it used to be the nursery. 
I was trying to see if it was the same size as another room the Primary uses...and it turned out they were the same square footage just shaped a little different. 
The other class was 8' by 11'.
 An-y-ways...

(The rest of these pictures were taken today.)
This cute girl with long hair is our friend Julie!
Coat rack is behind Julie.

Then we have the door to the chapel/multi-purpose room.
And a classroom table with more flowers and the programs for Sacrament Meeting.

This is a nice picture from the back of the chapel.
The glass door is on the left of this picture. 
The chairs are set up at an angle, facing the corner. 

This is a view from the opposite side of the room. 
Some things are a little different. 
But, for the most part it looks like a typical Mormon church! Right?
Sacrament table, all cleaned up and tucked away.
The padded chairs in front of the table are turned around because the Elder's Quorum meets in here during the last hour of church but, those are usually facing the other way and make up the front row of the chapel chairs. 

Typical.

Podium.




Here is a view of the back of the chapel. 
I was standing by the organ. 
That open door is the library/custodial closet.

The majority of the right side of the room is the Library.

The majority of the left side of the room is the Custodial closet. 
All the cleaning liquids are locked in that cabinet. 

Moving on. 

This is me backing out of the chapel. 

Typical. 
I love the art in the church buildings and it is always so beautifully framed. 

We backed out of the chapel, we turn around and end up in the kitchen!
 No! Brother Stephenson, don't drink the dish soap!
He's funny! Being a sport and posing for my picture tour.

That is the doorway we were just standing in when we caught Bro. Stephenson.

Then onward, on the right, one of the bathrooms.

Across from this bathroom is the Primary Room.



 Outside the Primary room we continue on to the next room, which is the Nursery. 
I actually took this picture during Nursery...the rest I took after church. 
This room is the biggest "classroom" but it has the most doors...so it gets tricky.
The door behind Sister Milner (on the chair, reading the book) goes to the outside hallway, we keep that dead bolted.
The door on the left continues through the church. 
Just on the other side is a baby gate. 
To the left of me, where I am standing and taking the picture there is another classroom. 
I am standing in the final door, the door we just came from the Primary through.
We keep a baby gate there too. 

Here is the classroom, just off the nursery. 
This is the other classrooom I measured. Small.
This is where our Jr. Primary class meets. 
In January it will be 3 years - 6 years and it will have 4 children.

Walk through the nursery and we pass the second bathroom, on the right. 
I don't think I got a picture of that one. 

Then to the left, sort of across from the bathroom is the Relief Society room. 
Also pretty small...but bigger than the other two classrooms. 
Feels a lot smaller when all the women are in it.


Then just beyond the Relief Society Room, there is another classroom...well sort of. 
It only has three walls, so we use a coat rack as the fourth wall. 
This is where the Sr. Primary class meets. 
We are losing Julie (model previously seen) in December to the Young Women.
So, in January this will be ages, 7 through 11, but there will only be a 9 year old boy and two 11 year old girls. Three...until those girls turn 12....and then we lose them to Young Women as well. 

Across from this "room" is another little lobby/waiting room.
And another door to the outer hallway.
My models in this picture are Rachel, Julie's sister and Sister O'Brien. 
They are waiting for people in a meeting...the meeting I'm supposed to be in...;-)

From where I was standing when I took the picture above, we have the clerks' office.
Brother Stephenson again, on the left and Brother Ince on the right.

And to the left of the clerks' office is the Branch President's office. 
Here he is!


 President Schemm
He's a character. 
He is also, Julie and Rachel's dad.

We love him!

Here is the rest of the people for our Branch Council meeting. 
 Well, there are a few missing, giving people rides home and some were out of town so they are missing. 
President Schemm, Elder's Quorum President Franks, then Elder Milner a senior missionary. 
His wife was with Sister Franks, giving rides home. 
They joined us later.

Then we have Sister Stephenson the Relief Society President on the right....Brother Stephenson's wife.
And Sister Schemm a counselor in the Relief Society, on the left, and of course, President Schemm's wife.


Here are Sister Franks, my Primary counselor. 
And Sister Milner (you saw her in the nursery and she is married to Elder Milner, senior missionary couple).
They are standing in the doorway of the nursery, by the bathroom and Relief Society room.

 That's our building! 
Pretty snazzy huh? 
Different and yet, very much the same. 
A small, business building version of a church. 

It is such a blessing to be a member of the church.
It is the SAME throughout the world! 
No matter where you go, you are taught the same doctrine. 
The buildings look similar, even when they are different. 
They are like home!

You are welcome to come and VISIT IN PERSON, ANYTIME!

Ok, one more picture of the handsome....
Brother Stephenson!

Here is Marley, bookin' it down the outer hallway.
Ready to go home after being away for 5 hours!
5 and a half, once we got home.

Church is from 10 to 1
But, we try to get there by 9:30 so I can do Primary and Nursery stuff.
Then on the 2nd and 4th Sunday, we stay late so I can attend Branch Council.
 And our snowy car.
 Thank you!
Come again!