Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

are you having fun yet?
we are! photos coming soon!
try this delicious dip!
it's great with ritz crackers (tastes like pumpkin pie),
pears, apples...
2 c powdered sugar
8 oz cream cheese
2 cups canned pumpkin
2 tsp pie spice
(or 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp each of allspice & nutmeg)
blend & serve!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Freak Friday School Halloween Parties

The day began with preparing treats for James' Preschool Halloween party, Heidi's Kindergarten party, and Addie's 2nd grade party (and dinner--wheat bread in the breadmaker and beef stew in the crock pot). 10am to preschool, then grocery store, then back to preschool for lunch/party with the mommies, then home to get the stew done and to assemble Addie's veggie tray & grab the kids' costumes, then off to the Elementary school!Addie as Thing One from Dr. Seuss
Heidi as Thing Two

James was ENCHANTED with this Snow White (Chloe) in Heidi's class.

Daddy joined in the fun
(here he is with James in Ad's classroom)

Addie's class did Mad Science experiments for their party...

...and then the whole school did a parade! Here's Heidi in the parade.

James found another Cat-in-the-Hat to hang out with
(Mrs. Kost) in the parade.

More fun to come...
3 parties down, 3 to go!
(and yes, mommy is draggin' booty...)

Thursday, October 29, 2009

So this is Thursday...

My last post was "Monday was fun," but then Tuesday and Wednesday? Not so much. I apparently have a sinus infection, but that's just normal for this time of year. Last year I had swollen Graves eyes, strep and a double ear infection for Halloween, so I count myself lucky this year. I am going to see the doc today just in case it's more than viral. Anyway, we're just pluggin' along over here, having fun with our kids, excited for all the good times coming up...Here's the front porch with all our jack-o-lanterns lit last night...
So much fun!

Two Videos from Last Week

James Loves Babies from MelinFamily on Vimeo.

Fall Color Hunt from MelinFamily on Vimeo.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Monday Was Fun

I was still feeling sick on Monday morning (sinus bug=300-pound-head, at least that what it felt like), so my dear Kim took James to pre-school and brought him home. This week they are learning about I and 9 and he brought home a picture of 9 scoops of ice cream. When I hung it on the fridge, he said, "Mama, I want that ice cream!" ... I made him some Serendipity3 frozen hot cocoa! YUM!
For Family Night, we carved our pumpkins. Addie took a picture.
Rich & Heidi made a cool Jack Skellington

James and I made a Snow White
(yes, he is obsessed with Snow White right now, especially the dwarves Hi-Ho song, and when Snow White "goes to the temple to get married" at the end--I think maybe the castle looks a lot like the San Diego temple where were married). Addie made her own silly face.
Also, notice my hubs' handsome hands in the background...he shoulda been a pianist!
And here is the fruit of our labors this morning!
Happy Spooking!
I bought little flameless tea lights on clearance last year so we now have fake candles to light our lanterns so the famous Livingston wind won't blow them out on Halloween!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Pumpkin Carving, Anyone?

Tonight's family night is all about the pumpkins. Speaking of, did you read this fun little article on msn?

If you'd like a way to incorporate gospel into jack-o-lanterns (I know, it's a stretch, which is proly why the book was a buck), here's a poem from a book I bought for a buck last week, called "My Happy Pumpkin." It's a perfect FHE lesson for the five-and-under crowd. Happy carving!

My Happy Pumpkin

Look in our garden! There are pumpkins on the ground!
Tall pumpkins, fat pumpkins, bumpy and round,
I skip through the patch and I look til I find
The pumkin I want, then my dad cuts the vine.

We wash it & dry it, then cut off the top.
We scoop out the seeds and the pulp and the slop.
We take all the mess and we throw it away
Into the trash—that’s where it will stay.

We cut out two circles to make giant eyes
And a triangle nose that’s just the right size
We carve out a smile and put in a light
My big happy pumpkin shines bright in the night!

My pumpkin is happy & I’m happy, too.
Heavenly Father loves me and makes me like new.
Jesus takes my mistakes & He throws them away.
I show God I love Him each time I obey.
I’m a child of God, he made me complete
From the hair on my head to the toes on my feet.
I’ll try to be good so that others can see
God's love and His light shining through me.

--Crystal Bowman

Melin Kids, October 2007

Sunday, October 25, 2009


[that's "the big 3-0" in Roman numerals]
Happy Birthday to my Sister, Jill!Here's a fun memory of Jill, SIL Audrey, & me with our little babies
Jack, Spencer, & Heidi in 2004.
Jill, I hope it has been a fabuous weekend and you know how much we love & miss you!
Zipadeeay and Hideeho!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Last night I listened to The Poet & The Poem on the way home from Bozeman. This episode featured an amazing story/project that made me drive really slow so I could listen to the whole thing. It was an autobiography and poetry by holocaust survivor (who has since died), Hilda Stern Cohen (click HERE to read more). Gail Rosen performs readings acompanied by music that was inspired by the poetry, much of it in German, much of it in melancholy minor chords and reminiscent of Jewish folk songs or German opera. It was amazing and I want to read her book and see the DVD that is coming out of the performance I heard last night. I loved how her husband described that she was raised an orthodox Jew and was very precocious in the doctrine and in her testimony and faith, and how that faith was the prism by which she experienced life and was the one thing she would not let the nazi's take from her. She became a religion teacher in Baltimore after the war. She began her religious education at the Jewish school in Wurzburg, birthplace of my husband. How ya like THAT connection?

I love Yellowstone Public Radio. LOOOOOVE it.

Finally, Friday

Our house is becoming quite the gallery. I love my priceless collections...

This is a recent family portrait by Heidi. I am fascinated when she writes our names in perfect mirror image, although kindergarten is making that more rare.

Last Monday we cut up egg cartons for crafts.
The first thing we made were these witches...
This one is James', hanging in the front window.

This one is Heidi's on the inside of the front door

And here's Addie's...
Today we had preschool at our house.
Here are the kids having snack time.

The girls

The boys

The yummy food
A few weeks ago, Kim made these "triangles" with the kids--I love them!

Today we used the rest of the egg carton to make pumpkins (color=orange) and spiders (number=8)...too much fun! Now I am off to read in Heidi's kindergarten class...even more fun! Smell ya later!
I am back from that place, love my Heidi Lynners! I noticed EC Prophet's funeral on the front page of the local paper (some of you may not know that our ranch is only a few miles north of the CUT compound, and our town is only about 30 miles north). I thought you might be interested in some local news, so read up HERE on Elizabeth Clare Prophet & the Church Universal & Triumphant. I love living in Montana, land of the free, home of the brave, haven of the manifesto-writing's awesome to live in a place that truly believes in different strokes for different folks...a place where stockpiling food & weapons is normal.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Just Sayin'...

Loved Ones, this invitation will be coming in the mail to many of you next week and we hope you will come (but we'll forgive you if you don't). I just wanted to let our AZ peeps know (like Aunt Lisaree, maybe Stephanie L.) that is selling Mesa-to-Billings tickets for $39.99 right now. So, ya know, maybe it's time for you to come to Montana....just sayin'...
10pm update: btw, all cousins are invited to sing "I Am A Child of God" in the service, so practice and join in!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Long Time Ago When We Was Fab

I got this stupid jingle in my head, so I logged on to youtube to see if they had the Mountain Dew commercial from 1986 with Lance Mountain and Tony Hawk and they totally did. I recorded this ad on one of my TV tapes back in HS because I had met Tony at a skate shop opening and he told us he had shot this commercial so I was watching for it. I loved it...and now it looks so sadly dated. And it's so sad how starved for sk8 footage (& skaters) we were...sigh...

Monday, October 19, 2009

Rainy Days & Mondays

Here are a few photos of the kids. We took a walk this morning , but it got pretty cold and windy.
On Friday, we said good bye to Peter.
He is touring National Parks for a few weeks, then returning to Prague.

Today during our walk, the girls spotted a black cat...
ooo, how Halloween-ish!

We had fun playing at the playground until it got a little too windy.


The other day I finished reading THIS book, Beloved Emma, a birthday gift from my mother-in-law. I thought it was going to be kind of a coffe table book, but when I sat down to read it, I ate it up in 2 days. It's a narrative biography of the life of Emma Smith and it has changed my attitude about a lot of things, especially the way I measure my faith. And how just plain weak I am, when I consider the things that shake me or cause me to murmur. Um, yeah...this story shut me right on up. I tend to give myself excuses for when I get into a funk, when I withdraw, putting my light under a bushel, then sitting down on top of the bushel and pouting. When I don't want to serve, I just want to curl up in a fetal position and whine. Emma had a thousand reasons to be depressed, anxious, faithless... but she gave what God asked her to give without question. Now that I am a wife and mother, I find her story almost unbearable to read--it makes me heartsick. The image of her as a graceful old woman, climbing the stairs of the Homestead to sit in her rocker and watch the sun set over the Mississippi River with tears streaming down her face just breaks my heart. What a life. What a woman. I can't wait to thank her.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Fall Break Friday

Today so far...we've made pumpkin-shaped sugar cookies and 3 doz chocolate chippers. After a pasta lunch, Addie served tea & cookies, and now we are off to read halloween stories and take a nap (since they went to bed at 9 and got up at 6, missing 3 hours of sleep, and it shows!)... Tea Party (Peach Crystal Light and sugar cookies)
Addie and James are so cute...

it's warm out (50 degrees) so Heidi is tormenting the neighbor dogs.
There's mama in the kitchen (wearing my England apron today)
...and our tollhouse nummies...we'll eat them in honor of
(hope it's a wonderful day--we're so glad you were born, Autumn!)
We're aslo celebrating the Bozeman Stake Preparedness Fair,
which is tomorrow at the stake center form 10-2 with free lunch and lots of info.
You get lots of good info, and afterward, I get my husband back! YAY!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Real Quick

I am singing "Bring on the Dancing Horses" in my head because one of the kids was messing with the dash of the van and stuck in the Pretty In Pink Soundtrack, so when I had to go on a run (grandma Melin was here) to get Triaminic meltaway strips for Addie-with-a-cold, Echo & the Bunnymen serenaded me.

Richard is gone to an insurance conference in Great Falls, so it's just me and the children til Tuesday night. It's going to be a very busy few days, so I thought I would post tonight in a moment of silence (the kids all crashed by 7:30, except Addie, who crashed after said strips were administered and Emergen-C was chuggged). Tomorrow I have my nieces all day and Tuesday I am cooking up some food then taking the kids over to Helena (arriving around 3-4pm) to see Auntie Laura and help her get ready for her big surgery on Wednesday. Rich is going to meet me in Helena and bring the kids back home, and I am going to stay the night and make sure that Laura is okay on Wednesday (and do what ever I can to help--??). I have to be back for Thursday morning because the kids have a 5-day fall break, so I guess I can catch up blogging then.

All is well with us. I feel like a true Montanan because I am happy to be hunkered down, bundled up, cozy in my home while it's freezing outside. I just love it (until about January 2nd, then I will be hatin' it). Here are some recent pictures Rich took with his cell phone:
Last Saturday 10/03 we biked to the drugstore soda fountain between conference sessions...YUM!
My Sweetie Boyz

We picked our apples before the big freeze...

Rich & James

Grandma & Addie
Addie in a tree James on a ladder
(on a hill...precarious...)

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Gracias, Amiga!

Today is Heidi's Grandma Date, so it's just me & Ad this afternoon (James is engrossed in watching Monsters, Inc on my ipod). We were so excited to come home from school and find a package on our porch (in the snow). We were even more excited when it turned out to be Serendipity's FRRROZEN HOT CHOCOLATE MIX, a bday gift from Lisa M. Andersen (that's "M for Marvelous")...It really is delightful, and it only takes 1/2 c of milk to make this big glass, which is great news for the lactose intolerant.
A happy addition to my pantry's baking shelf (which may as well be the chocolate shelf).

It's a big hit!
Thanks, again, Lis...your gifts are always unique and thoughtful!


Dear Loved Ones ,                                                                                We've enjoyed a great first week o...