Saturday, April 28, 2007

The Plague

Bubby and I are sooooo sick, I really look ( and feel) like death. It's pitiful.

BUT! I am so happy that the plague (which I could feel coming on for the past two weeks) did not attack me until the morning that Sam & Kristen left...that was merciful, because we have been so busy for the past two months. Oh, wait--I meant the past three years.

Anyway, we had a BLAST with Sambo & Special K on this leg of their Rocky Mountain adventure. They got better pix than I did, and I can't find time between coughing and blowing my nose to uplaod the few pix I got, but trust me--we had a great time, Montana spring is beyond gorgeous, and Sambo and SK are as cute as ever! The Lehmans joined us for some Hawaiian dinner on Thursday afternoon and evening and it was so much fun. MY SIBLINGS RULE.

I have to go nap, but here are some fun pix of LAST weekend in Utah: Jen's Temple Square pix here and Michaela's pix from the Buchert Compound are here (check out Heidi, my pica girl).

I'll be back when my head is less cloudy and I can see out my gooey red eyes. Lovies...

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Sunday Dinner at Willy's

Sam & Kristen came up from Phoenix on Saturday, so we all got together at Willy's and invited Cousin Brent, and ate good food and enjoyed our awesome familiness! Sam with James, Kristen with Maeby...this caption shoudl say, "get your own baby!" :)
Brent with Liam, less than 48 hours after their Guys Night Out at the Blaze game
James loved Maeby's toys...look how excited he is!
Addie, Isabelle, and Spencer in The Box house
Grill Master Will
Heidi grinning with Belle and Brent behind her
Heidi and Jack open their fun gifts from Petersens

(Heidi was 3 on 4/15, Jack will be 3 on April 26)

Melanie and Ally played princess checkers

I LOVE MY FAMILY! They simply ROCK. And maybe it's just me, but man, we've got some seriously ADORABLE kids! I am so glad we're related and so glad we got together this weekend. You're all super cool--those in attendance and those far away (we missed you).

Spring Sabbath

On Sunday, we walked to church just 2 blocks form Jill's house. It was so beautiful outside!Michaela Claar (Jenn's daughter), Ally, Addie, Isabelle, and Heidi under a beautiful tree
Ally, Michaela, Heidi, Jack, Addie, Isabelle, and me walking to church (Jenn drove the van with James inside, and Rich took the picture). I love spring in Utah...maybe because that's the first place I ever experienced spring...I dont' know, but it's always magical to me, every year. (I love it in Montana, too!)

Dads & Daughters in Moab

Rich had the idea to invite Drew & Willy to take their eldest daughters to camp in Moab for Spring Break. It all went down this weekend...
Here's the camp
Here's the scenery
Here are the girls: Ally Petersen, Addie Melin, and Melanie Post
Mel and Addie having an adventure
The girls enjoying the campfire
Apparently the dads got tired of taking the ladies out to potty, so Uncle Drew and Uncle Willy made a special potty chair for the girls.
Here are Addie and her Daddy on Saturday cute!
Here are Addie and her Daddy defying death above the Colorado River (yikes!)
Addie and a view of the lovely desert in Arches
Will, Melanie, Addie, Rich, Ally & Drew
GROUP HUG! Silly cousin girls breaking camp...
...and heading into town for some dinner Saturday night. That's Addie at Zac's pizza.

Heidi's Family Night Party

Heidi had her friend-party on Monday night, which we combined with Family Night.

Here you can see the adults in our great room--there's Dad Melin, Angie, and Me on the left, and then the Sister Missionaries (Sister Bly-left, and Sister Hanna-right), with the Gonzales family in the middle.
Michaela Claar, Breana Arakawa, Addie, Boston & Alexander Winsor eating dinner in our backyard.
Me and James in the kitchen
Breana, Heidi, and TJ eat cupcakes...
...with Alexander, Danny, and Addie
Presents! (Doodlebears, puzzles, dinosaurs)
Later, Heidi wore her Doodle Bear decoder glasses to bed...

Good Night, Crazy Birthday Girl!

Oh, to be THREE!

Heidi's Birthday was on a Sunday this year, so we just had a little cake and ice cream at Grandma's house that night... Here's the Princess with her cake (love that face!)
...and here is her REAL smile!
Opening her Aqua Doodle with Grandpa and Cousin Danny
The birthday girl was quite pleased (see her approving smile?!) with her cool book from her Great-Grandpa & Grandma Elrey...thanks for always remembering, Gram & Gramp!
James loved the rapping paper.

Last Week: Photos

Heidi had her three-year-old check up with Dr. O'Hara. The doctor complimented me profusely on my kids' development, both physical and social, and on their health. She mentioned that it looks from their records that they are only sick a couple of times a year. We discussed my awesome parenting (AHEM) and pinpointed (a) the kids' varied but mostly good whole food diet and (b) the fact that I exposed them to every possible virus/ bacteria at an early age (like when James went to church when he was 4 days old--don't worry, we left right after sacrament before anyone slobbered on him) and that I often refuse antibiotics unless there is definite evidence of infection or urgent need (otherwise we tough it out naturopathically because I'm all Andrew-Weil that way).
I suppose it also helps that I wasn't in high school whenI got pregnant and my kids never come in contact with cigarette smoke. As far as their social development--well, she hasn't seen Heidi tired and we didn't talk about those days when I have computer work to do and they watch about 3 hours of Playhouse Disney while stuffing their faces with baby carrots and Ovaltine milk. Anyway, Heidi weighs 40 pounds and is 39 inches tall, and is one smart cookie.
James likes the fish on the doctor's wall... and speaking of James, he got checked up the week before and he weighs a few ounces shy of 23 pounds and is 29-1/2 inches tall.
Here I am rocking my boy...
...and watching Heidi build a tent out of pillows on the couch.
She's a busy little stinker!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

"Hallelujah, Here I Am..."

Hm, I just sang that title in my head and realized it's the lyric to a song I haven't listened to in probably a decade (anybody remember Fairground Attraction? LOVED 'em!).
your smile is a prayer that prays for love
and your heart is a kite that wants to fly
oh, hallelujah, here I am
let's cut the strings tonight

Anyway, we have just returned from a fun 4-day weekend in Utah and I have been working all day to get the photos up. It's not working out, so I jsut wanted to post this HOWDY and let y'all know that we are well and happy and all that.

TONS-o-love-and-thanks to my sister JILL and her family for the fine accomodations and fabulous company. We had a ball at your house, sister, and it's SOOOOO good to have you back! Also, shout out to my friend Jenn, who came with us, and served as SuperNanny when the kids were wearing their moms down.

I also want to tell my sister, Sara, and her family CONGRATULATIONS on their new baby girl! I have a new niece named Kathlyn who was born on Friday night in Michigan. I am sure she is gorgeous because Sara and Rob make lovely children, and Kathlyn's two older brothers are as handsome as can be! I'll post pix ASAP.

Also, a dear sister-friend of mine is waiting by her Grandma's side today, waiting and watching and helping her pass from this life, and I want her to know that my thoughts have been with her all day. I try to put myself in your shoes, my friend, and my heart gets way too heavy. I have been humming comforting hymns as I work today, as if maybe you could hear tender voice like thine can peace afford...leave to thy God to order and provide, in every change he faithful will remain...sorrow forgot, love's purest joys restored...when change and tears are past, all safe and blessed we shall meet at last...O Thou who changest not, abide with me... I hope (I know) He will abide with you today and throughout the coming days. I love you.

Poor James has a chest cold and I hear him calling. So for now, I will refer you to some of my favorite posts from this past few this one from cjane to her SIL with cancer, or this one by Becca about naming her daughter Daffodil. I would like to dedicate the Regina Spektor song (read it here) on cjane's post to MY sisters and sisters-in-law. I love you chicas! I'll be back later, probably after I get my little sickies (who had WAY too much fun with their cousins this weekend) settled down and fed and snuggled and off to bed and after I make a nice fresh bed for Sam and Kristen to sleep in tomorrow night! Lovies....

Oh, and PS: THIS blog has been most inspiring to my creative side lately. What? You didn't know I had one? Well, I do--it's very unskilled, but gets an A for effort, and Miss Kelly (the owner of said blog) makes me try harder everyday.

Monday, April 16, 2007

I love you people, I swear...'s just that life has required a lot more LIVING this week than OBSERVING. I will post again soon, but for now, here's an excerpt from an email I shot off to a girlfriend while I was in the throes of The Weekend. How are all of you? Comments will be appreciated, and Michelle, if you read this, I promise to answer your email TONIGHT! Part of it (the part about wood floors) could be answered here (I love my wood laminate, but if I could have real hardwood--like walnut or something, I totally would. And a maid to clean it, while we're dreaming). awesome to hear from you! I have had the day from HECK, and it's almost 10pm and I am still sitting here in the sweat pants and torn T-shirt I did yard work and wood hauling in this morning, if that tells you anything.

Heidi turns three tomorrow, and HOLY HANNAH, I hope the threes aren't as terrible as the two's! We have all kinds of stuff to do for church tomorrow, but I am excited to have cake and presents tomorrow after naps and watch the new Charlotte's Web with her (the DVD is one of her gifts and it is one of my all-time fave kid books). She'll have a small party/BBQ with fam & friends Monday night. I'll have to send pix of the skirts and headbands I made for the girls--they are wearing them to church tomorrow, even though they are "play skirts" (can be worn to school).

About cleaning windows--yes, I clean them every year. I usually use newspaper and windex in the inside, and then I use that Windex hose stuff on the outside. It does a pretty good job except if you have windows where your sprinklers spray and leave hard water spots. I usually go back over any bad residue with the newsaper and windex outside, too, and I even had to use a green scrubby on one basement window.

I actually have wood laminate floors, but I used to have wood and I swear by Murphy's Oil Soap and the Vileda mop that folds in half with the washable pad. I love it and I love the smell. I still use it on all my wood furniture because it works and the smell gives me happy childhood memories (I can still sing the song from the commercial if you care to hear it..."I've
been using Murphy's Oil Soap on this wood floor of mine, now the dirt is finished but the finish is fine...").

I have to get to the tub and to the bed ASAP, but I will just tell you that all the sibs are doing great, some better than ever. My sister (who was also my best pal) went to detox, rehab, and just graduate with her 90-day chip from NarcAnon. She is totally of pain killers and has fully recovered from a hysterectomy she had in January and I am really excited to see her again and have her be truly present AND pain- free for the first time in years! My crafty friend Jenn is coming with me to Utah--MORMON MECCA-- because she has never been to SLC (WTF? And she calls herself LDS!) I am excited to show her around because, frankly, Salt lake is tons-o-fun.

Keep in touch and let me know how the housekeeping goes. ...Jamie

More Fun at Heidi's Party

James and Cousin Rosalie Share the Love

Cousin Pals on Vimeo

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Friday, April 13, 2007

On This Date in History...

...My Dear Georgia Bee was born back in 1964!
Happy Birthday, Amiga!
Here we are back in 1997 whenI was visiting Provo...
I'm waving and Georgia is biting an apple.

Erin Casper holding Brandon, Geo holding Sam Egan, Jamie holding Brittany Capser, and Heidi carrying Mags

...and here is a picture from a color-copied collage, which shows not one but TWO BIRTHDAY GIRLS...that's Georgia rubbing Heidi's belly (that's Maggie in there), and Heidi (another dear amiga and Georgia's SIL) had a birthday on Wednesday, so


(sorry I'm so late, but there is an AWESOME card in the mail to you!)

Georgia, Enjoy your day! I am so sorry I have failed once again to get your package in the mail, but GOOD BIRTHDAY NEWS! I can deliver it in person next weekend! Please can we have a gathering sometime on Friday, Saturday or Sunday at which most Provo Bucherts are present and can play with my sweet baby James? I miss all yall so much. And what say ye, Utah Amigas? Anyone up for lunch on Friday 4/20? I'll be in Lehi, so e-me and I'll e-you my cell number and we'll rendezvous!

Sunday, April 08, 2007

On Friday...

...we left Livingston at noon for Idaho Falls to photograph a wedding and finally have our anniversary overnight temple trip. I had never been to the IF temple, but that's where Rich was endowed, so I was excited to check it out. My awesome visiting teacher Marianne and her daughter, Caitlyn, came adn had a slumber party with my kids Friday night, then Gram & Gramp Melin picked them up on Saturday morning when they got home from the Billings Temple. Rich & I stopped briefly in Bozeman at I Spy Design so that Rich could submit some photos to their new stock photography site, Wild West Photos. It was a great visit and I am really excited about the new site.
Althoug it was warm and sunny in IF, spring hasn't quite sprung there yet...I thought this bare tree was so beautiful!
We arrived home to WINTER in Livingston. This is a photo taken in Bozeman as you head toward the pass that leads east to Livngston. Beneath those clouds lurked frosty, windy, twenty-degree weather and lots of left-over snow. (Luckily, the sun blessed us on Easter morning).
We had a lovely little vacation--thank you so much to our babysitters and to the Harveys, who paid for our trip and were sealed on Saturday--congratulations!

Easter Part I: The Booty

Okay, before the booty, I have to show you our Easter decorations from Grandma Lynn and Nana... Grandma gave me this tree years ago, but I didn't have a nice, safe place to put it until this year, and we had so much fun putting it up. She also gave us the egg jar, which we filled with Cadbury mini-eggs, of course, and the pearly eggs and the bunnies in the window sill.

Nana sent us cute cards and those cute egg boxes are from last year.
Last week during spring break, I had to be creative with Addie, so we made these Martha Stewart party puffs from gift tissue (8 sheets of 20x20, fan-folded, tied, and poofed out) . I have also succumbed to the window clings because the kids LOVE them and they are a fun and easy decoration (cheap, too--most of the time I get them at Community Thrift for 25 cents!)

Easter Morning...Addie checks out her basket and her book, "A is for Abigail" by Lynne Cheney (whom I once met at an Independent Women's Forum thing back in 1996).
Heidi with her basket and her Pixar story collection
James was suprprisingly excited about his Peter Cottontail book!
(excuse my appearance--it's 7am on a Sunday!)
James gives his bunny a kiss!


Dear Loved Ones,                      This week has been a lot of work. Kids have been home sick with colds, Heidi was home on grievi...