Friday, February 25, 2011

Bla, Bla, Blaaaaah!

I haven't had much news or any pictures to post this week, so I let 10 days go by without posting here, which is against my personal blogging standards. Oops. So here's an update.

I DID update the ranch blog and worked hard on all things DB7 including getting letterhead and envelopes and rental contracts printed up, collecting brochures, etc., taking photos of rennovation progress, making design decisions, and booking our first 2 guests for summer 2011! Hooray!

I had a wonderfully relaxing get-away with Richard to celebrate our 10th anniversary. We spent Thursday and Friday nights in Billings just relaxing, eating good food (mostly at HuHot Mongolian Grill cuz it's so diet-friendly! But we did go to Texas Roadhouse for a steak that was like BUTTAH!), shopping, attending temple, talking, walking, etc., just having fun. We haven't been very good about date nights the past few years that I've been sick, but it's times like these that remind me how nice the next season of our lives will be. I sometimes get sad about empty nesting, but then I remember that Richard and I only had 6 months together before Adeline was on the way and we became Parents, not just a couple. It will be nice to return to the couple days and enjoy one another some more (with 30 years of parenting under our belts...phew!). THANKS, Rich, for being so thoughtful and flexible and always striving to make me happy and comfortable. I love you!

I had a morning sickness relapse over the weekend. And by "morning sickness" I mean I barfed all day Sunday. And then I had a bad headache and just felt "off" on President's Day (dang it) when I had the kids home from school for 2 more days. We didn't do anything fun because I felt so bad, and I know we are all sick and tired of my being sick and tired. I can feel it wearing on the kids--they fight with eachother and there is a lot of tension that we just don't usually have because I just can't keep up with them and do all the things they need me to do or they are accustomed to. I know it will soon be just a memory, but getting through the birth and post-partum still stands between us and Normal. Praying extra hard to hold it together for 3 more months!

James is loving preschool, but he is home with me today because he has been coughing like crazy at night for the past 6 nights and yesterday he ran a fever and got congested. Heidi has a little of this cold, too, but we are trying to nip it in the bud as fast as possible. We haven't had a serious illness since last year, knock on wood, so we're hoping little man is onthe upswing.

Also, in the midst of all of this we missed Cousin Sammy's 5th and Papa Post's 61st birthday on Monday and Cousin Owen's 2nd birthday Wednesday. DANG IT (actually, we tried to call Sammy for his birthday, but we never connected--hopefully that counts for SUMTHIN!:))--we love you guys and we're so glad you were born! We did go to an Eagle Scout court of honor that night--the 23rd-- and it was really cool. Andrew Holm and Ferguson Jeffrey are our first Eagle Scouts in 9 or 10 years and our whole ward family is really proud of them.

So now we are just gearing up for Reading Week at the girls' school next week. Rich & I are in charge of Dr. Seuss' Green Eggs & Ham birthday party again this year (on March 8th)-- I always like doing that, it's a fun tradition. I hope I feel good enough to keep up with the rest of what we've got going on this spring with family (a trip to UT to see Will's family visiting from Australia, and got to IKEA and conference), the ranch, Young Women, and PTO. Life is good and we are just couting down to May 24th when the baby arrives & I feel better!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

James Goes to Preschool!

Thanks to my new "job" running the DB7 Listings/Blog, we can send James to a few months of pre-school. I got to thinking about how even though his academic skills are as good as some first graders', he is never away from me for very long and full-day kindergarten next year might freak him out, so we signed him up at Little Feet Preschool at the Methodist Church. He is pretty dang excited...James at the front door at about 8:25 this morning.
Big grin on the way to his classroom

so sweet!

Here he is putting away his pencil box and taking it all in with his classmates...

and his favorite class mate of all...ASHLEY!
He's gonna have a great time.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Valentines

We celebrated Valentines Day with friends this weekend.James had Ashely over for lunch on Friday...
they discussed their wedding plans again.
***
On Saturday, Rich & James went to the ranch while the girls and I had a Valentines party at home. Heidi had two friends over, plus Aunt Debbie, and Addie had 3 friends over. Somehow I missed getting a picture of Heidi and friends, but Addie and her friends had a fun time trying to make hearts out of their bodies...
Hailey W., Aurora, and Addie

Hailey, Aurora, Kendall, and Addie


Hailey, Kendall, Aurora, and Addie

Kendal, Hailey, Addie, Aurora
***
We made paper Valentines, played games, ate finger sandwiches, chips, cookies, cherry 7Up, and Valentine candy, and then the girls went home cuz we had to dash off to get ready for the Peter Pan matinee. I'm sad I didn't take more pictures, but it was a fun time (Debbie made it even more fun, of course). I am excited to REALLY celebrate with my Valentine next week--on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday he's whisking me away to celebrate our 10th Anniversary at the temple and our favorite restaurants, and maybe even a little baby shopping-- HOORAY!

Never Grow Up!

This weekend was all about Valentines and PETER PAN! I went to all three shows and it was super fun!Here's the program...

...and the inside.

The play was held in the brand new Dulcie Theatre--it's SO NICE!
Here's the audience at the Saturday 2pm show.

The PTO manned the ticket booth...

...and the concessions stand where we sold tons of homemade treats donated by parents.

Here's a picture of Addie on stage as a Mermaid. She's third from the left.

Here's Tigerlily and all the Mermaids, plus a few Lost Boys after the last show.
(Tigerlily-Ellie, Mermaids- Hannah, Brylea, Erin, Madison, Aurora, Azalea, Izzy, and Addie;
Lost Boys- August, Jimmy, and Ivan)
Our Little Mermaid!
Our whole extended family came to the last show--Grandparents, cousins, aunt and uncle--and Heidi gave Addie a bouquet of tulips. She was so happy!
***
GREAT JOB, Winans & Crazy Mountain!

Monday, February 07, 2011

A Crash Course in Drama

Our winter months are usually pretty ho-hum, low-key and inert by design. I kind of like hibernating and watching winter through the window (and there is a lot of "winter" this year! Holy cow, it's snowing AGAIN! it's like all the snow of all my 8 winters here COMBINED!). But some how life got kinda busy these months--we're breaking with tradition doing lots of new things this winter. Here's an update:

Last week at the girls' school they held drama workshops with the local theatre company. The week culminated Friday afternoon in auditions for a production of Peter Pan. I didn't think the girls would want to try out again (they didn't get parts in Alice in Wonderland last year), but they stuck it out. Heidi--our very own drama queen--didn't get a part this time, but Addie was cast as a mermaid. If you're local, please plan to come cheer her on this weekend, and support the PTO!




So all this week the kids are rehearsing for the play, and then they do three shows over the weekend. That's going to be a marathon. Before we knew we'd be doing the play this week, the girls and I thought it would be fun to have a little Valentines Party. These are the invitations we made (and of course the girls have to be different from eachother, so Addie had 5 blue invitations and Heidi had 5 white invitations)...





Also, I don't think I mentioned her that while I was in Arizona, Heidi lost both of her front teeth AND started Tae Kwon Do classes.

That's the first tooth lost...she lost the other one (on the left) the next day. I need to take a picture of her missing her 2 front teeth cuz it's priceless.
Here she is in her uniform at Tae Kwon Do

She goes to class on Monday & Tuesday nights. She's loving it!


Most of the kids are 5-6, she is almost 7 and much taller.

***

James decided today that he wants a Valentines Party, too, so we are inviting "his girls" (Ashley and Lydia, and Lydia's little sister Suzy) over for lunch on Friday. It will also count for visiting teaching, so yay. Also, today Rich twisted his ankle in the snow and thought he may have broken it. He spent the morning at the orthopedic clinic to learn that it's a gnarley sprain. He's laid up with ibuprofen & is trying to take a nap (he deserves it after working at the ranch every morning from 5am-7am!). So much for hibernating, huh?

Retro: January Photos

I just realized I never posted these pictures of Mark's and Jared's visit from Texas last month.James & Jared playing trains
On Jan 15th, all the Melin boys took the kids up for some snow fun at Pine Creek

Addie by the car


Heidi, Jared, and James playing in the snow

Jess & Mark making hot cocoa
Mark & Jared


Addie
Jared & Heidi making a snowman

Heidi's Snowbaby

Heidi, James, Jared & Addie warm up with a story from Uncle Mark.

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Daughters and Bodies and Breaking Mama Heart

I have a lot of little things to write about today and in coming days, some pictures to post, etc., but right now I am getting ready to take my daughter to the doctor. She has been having tummy aches that sound a lot to me like lactose intolerance, but I've noticed she started worrying about what she eats besides the dairy products and I don't want her to be one of those dieting 9-year-olds. Alarm bells have sounded in my mind and I have begun rifling through my own comments and attitudes. Am I sticking to my committment to focus on hygeine, health and happiness and to avoid comments about size and appearance? Where is she getting the idea that she shouldn't eat certain things? Man, I hate this part of parenting, the part when you are reminded that your own influence is starting to shrink and the kids are picking up ideas from God-knows-where and you're on 24/7 alert to protect and defend what's true and what's right.

Reading Courtney's blog this morning brought tears to my eyes. I consider this post an answer to my mama prayers today. Have a gander:

I cannot nor should I keep my children in a bubble. I cannot keep them from the messages that bombard them. But I can teach them to think critically. I can arm them with truth. I can model self acceptance and I can create a safe haven—a place where they can talk and be heard, a place where they can question, scrutinize and still find acceptance.

You can too.

Encourage balanced eating of all types of foods in moderation; encourage eating in response to body hunger.
Get active as a family (not to lose weight but to use and enjoy your body—moderate exercise increases self-esteem and helps to lift depression).


Speak up when you hear family members making comments about a person’s body shape or weight—don’t allow this kind of talk in your home (even from grandparents).

Encourage and model critical thinking of messages we are exposed to.

Do not dismiss comments from your children about their bodies. Allow them to talk about it; ask questions; have conversations. Simply telling someone they “look great” or “don’t need to lose weight” will not change how they feel about themselves. But it will encourage them to stop talking to you about it.

Examine and if necessary, modify the appearance expectations you have about your own child.

Work toward openly loving and accepting your own body. In doing this, you will give your children permission to do the same. On the other hand, if you refuse to accept your own body, your children will receive the message that they must look a certain way to be loveable.

Here's something to think about as well: "You can't control or dictate the quantity of food your child eats, and you shouldn't try. You also can't control or dictate the kind of body your child develops, and you shouldn't try. What you can do, and it is a great deal, is set things up for your child so she, herself, can regulate her food intake as well as possible, and so she can develop a healthy body that is constitutionally right for her." --Child of Mine: Feeding with Love and Good Sense by Ellyn Satter

So there's my to do list. And it's your to-do list, too if you have contact with my family. Don't make my mama bear come out and get you--no weight or appearance comments for me and my house.

I'll be back with an update later, after the doctor and lunch. XO

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