Thursday, September 30, 2010

More Than Words

In her free time (wait a minute... she's five... it's all free time), Bethelle enjoys plugging away at her workbooks.  Since she has begun to read well, she can sit and do them almost independently, although she prefers that I sit by her.  I try to at least be working on something in the same room.

Yesterday, when she had finished working and moved on to some other form of entertainment, I began cleaning up her work space and found her book open to this:
In this exercise, you read the poem on the left page, then answer the questions on the right.  I find that she generally answers quickly and correctly without looking back at the poem.

Look closely at her last answer:
Q: What is your favorite thing?  Why?
A: Mom and dad      thaye tac car [of me]


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Call me "The Good Guy"

because I'm wearing boots.

This is what I hear Rigby say to me several times a day when I forget that he is not "Rigby," but instead, "The Good Guy."

Rigby has astutely noticed that most princes and superheroes wear boots.  He used to require that I call him "Rigby" even when he was pretending otherwise, but times change.

So here he is: The Good Guy.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Merry Christmas, Elke!

Nick and I finally cashed in on our Christmas present from his parents: a stay at a great hotel in downtown Seattle and babysitting while we're gone.  It was sooo refreshing.
After packing up the car, picking up Bethelle from school, and dropping the kids off at Grandma's, I began my weekend of freedom by cutting off all the hair I had been growing since Curie was born.  I picked Nick up at work before two, and we were officially kid-free and on vacation for the next 27 hours.  We ate burgers, hit golf balls, walked around the city, polished off sumptuous gelato, rented a movie, and ordered take-out at midnight.  The hotel had an outdoor pool (which was actually warm) and spa.  From the water, we were surrounded by the ambiance of skyscrapers.  I think that is a first for me!

The next morning we rode the ducks!  I've seen these things running around my whole life, but never actually been tourist enough to get in one.
This thing drives around the city like a tour bus, then effortlessly drops down into Lake Union.  We saw the Sleepless in Seattle house, seaplanes taking off, a ten million dollar yacht, the Fremont bridge troll, and more, all from the duck.  After our tour we ate lunch at the local Brazilian rodizio, Ipanema.  People rave about it, but I don't think those people have spent much time in Utah.  I don't give Utah credit very often, but I think they get the prize for best rodizios in the states.

We headed back to the kids in time for me to go to a church meeting with my mom while Nick watched our kids and three of their cousins.  Good work, Nick!  When I finally got back to my babies, Bethelle almost hyperventilated to see me, Rigby didn't recognize me with my short hair, and Curie set a new world record for fastest crawling by a baby.  It was good to get away, but even better to have them back again.  Mostly.

It Happened

Bethelle has been so patient, waiting for that loose tooth to fall out.  It has been wiggly for almost a month!

While eating lunch today, she suddenly got so excited.  When she found her composure again, she ran to Nick and I with a little white bud in her hand.  Rigby joined in the excitement, and shouted, "hip, hip, HOORAY!"  She has already washed it, put it in a baggie, and slipped it under her pillow for tonight.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

What's Gonna Work? Teamwork!

The title comes from a song that the Wonder Pets sing.  Cute little show.  We sing that line often at home.

Yesterday morning at 6 am I heard little feet coming up the stairs to my room.  I cracked my eyes and looked over the foot of my bed in the dark.  Little Rigby appeared, whispering, "Mama?  Mama?  Befelle need more toyette pape-oh" (trans: Bethelle needs more toilet paper).

I gave him a roll and sent him quietly back down the stairs.  When I went down to get them half an hour later, they were tucked back in their beds.

What a sweet little team.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Where the Air is Clear

Apartment life can really make you itchy to get out.

So we packed up our soccer balls and headed to the park.  We played a little two-on-two, with Curie chewing on the goal markers.

Then we realized we had this in the car.
The pictures were taken with the phone, but I wanted to document here the fun we had with that kite.  Bethelle really got the hang of it.  She maneuvered it like a pro.  She can now get it up by herself and keep it up well.  She even does "tricks."

While Bethelle was on strings, Rigby laid in the grass (OK, turf...) and watched the clouds move.  He was enthralled.  Until he spilled his water bottle on his face.  He cried so inconsolably, I thought something was really wrong, but it turned out he was just that upset that his reverie was interrupted.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Football with Babies

We still call all three kids our "babies."

On Saturday afternoon, the Huskies played Nebraska and Nick was pretty hyped up about it.  I told him I'd watch with him if the house was clean.  It was a good plan.

Nick bought Husky stickers and a pom-pom for the kids and everybody wore purple.  Bethelle got so excited about making posters, dressing up, and decorating for the game.  She wanted purple dinner again, but I was not feeling that ambitious.  I just got the house clean, remember?

As the game got started, Bethelle was not done with her poster-making, so she brought it all into our room (where the only TV is) to continue.  She spent the entire game coloring and cutting and taping and creating.  Her back was turned to the TV the whole time, as she wrote, "Go Huskies" and "Booooo, down!" for when the other team was advancing.  At one point she had to go downstairs for another marker, so she made us pause the game while she was gone.  When she got back, she turned away, getting right back to work, and told us that we could start the game again.

For me, it was football school.  For the first quarter of the game, we paused and talked about each play, call, and rule that was used.  I had never really understood football before.  I still probably don't understand it, but I enjoyed the first half.

Football games are twice as long as they need to be.

Monday, September 13, 2010

A Birthday Card for Daddy

Hapy Brthday Daddy
Will play fun games and fun
Activitees tugethr

(She made this all by herself - just needed help reaching an envelope!)

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Beyond a Birthday

Nick's Birthday.  9/11.  Some time must be spent in reflection and remembrance before celebrating.

Everyone says, "I'll always remember where I was..." but do we always remember how we felt?  I hope so.  It was such a foreign experience for me and the five girls I lived with at BYU.  We watched in confusion as the first building burned and in horror as the second plane hit.  It was what would have been a busy Tuesday morning, but none of us cared about class.  As the initial shock wore off, we finally went out the door and headed to the Marriot Center, the largest gathering place on campus.  It seemed more logical than class.  As we got closer, we saw that everyone else on campus was headed that way.  We were looking for sense and direction amid the horror.

I'd never had such an urge to enlist.


Nick's birthday started with a bang.  Bethelle had her first soccer game!  The games are short and sweet. No score was kept, but the other team was pretty good.  Bethelle could tell that they won, but she didn't seem to mind.  She got in a few good kicks and learned a bit about the "team" mentality.

Next up was a trip to Olive Garden to meet up with his mom, sister, and her family.  Curie broke a glass within 30 seconds of arrival to celebrate.  We had great conversation, good food, and ended with a Hostess cupcake birthday cake!

Nick then headed off to the Huskies game in Seattle.  The thrill of the stadium, the purple sea of 70,000, the college football air, the victory... "utter bliss," he says.  The tickets were a gift from his dear friend, Tom.  He also enjoyed the 9/11 memorial, including the Air Force jumbo-jet fly-over during the national anthem.
The Huskies always run out of their tunnel with a UW flag.  Nick got all emotional when they came running as pictured below.  Add in the mountains, water, sunset...  If real men cry at football games, then Nick is a real man.
The kids were a little sad about missing their Daddy on his birthday, but we planned a surprise while he was gone.  Bethelle and Rigby enjoyed making this cake with me while he was out:
That's the MASTERS flag symbol, for those of you who don't golf.  I know I haven't posted it yet, but Nick attended the opening rounds of the Masters this year, accomplishing what was to be his life-long dream at too young an age.  Someday I will make a post on that trip, but getting him to sit beside me to help make that post has been harder than I thought.
And this was no ordinary cake!  Nick likes mint chip ice cream cake.
I keep the kids off sugar until they are one, and Curie was pleased as punch to finally join in the fun!
Happy birthday, Nick!  Here's to the next year's calm and chaos!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Mad as a Pair of Hockeysticks

My only problem with this clip is that the woman does not deliver her message with enough fire in her voice.

Howard Beale does.

Monday, September 6, 2010


Labor day.

I took the day off today. I told Nick on Friday that Monday was to be MINE. So this morning I cleaned the house. You may think of that as no fun, but I had no mommy-duties as I cleaned. And I like a clean house. Then, at my leisure, I got all dressed up for no one but me. I took a biography and put Renee Olstead, Diana Krall, and Madeleine Peyroux in my pocket. I went for a walk through our whimsy downtown and went in stores that I wouldn't dare take my children. I never knew nor cared what time it was.

I made my way to the end of the little strip to a creperie I've been wanting to try. It was closed, but I can imagine how nice it would've been...

I guess I'll need another labor day.

Friday, September 3, 2010


On the first full day of kindergarten, Bethelle says that they learned about squares, triangles, and the numbers 1 and 2. Although I don't think that there is anything new that she might have learned about those subjects, she told me about it with enthusiasm. And we both agreed that those are great numbers.

Which reminded me of calculus (hard to follow, I know. Just keep reading). I took one semester of calculus in high school, then graduated early. Because one high school semester is not equivalent to one college semester, I had to take college calc from the beginning. This meant a lot of review, but that was fine because I remembered how hard high school calc had been and I figured I could use the review.

As I sat in lectures, my previous encounter with the subject made it easy for me. But I wasn't bored. I was loving it. "Loving calculus?" you ask. Yeah, because I got to see the beauty of it rather than just scramble to work through the confusion like I had the first time.

Honestly, I would love to break open that college text (which I kept) and just pour through every problem. Because I still love it.

So maybe kindergarten will be OK.

'Fess up. Who told him about skateboards?

Rigby is on a skateboard kick. I guess we've seen a couple pass by in parking lots, but the fascination is untraceable. When we walk down a hill, he begins extrapolating on how a skateboard would move on this sidewalk and what would be the best path to take.

He wants one.

I told him that he's too small.

He wants a small one.

Then I told him that he has a scooter, which is the small version of a skateboard. So he wanted to ride his scooter to the bus stop to pick up Bethelle. He rode some and walked some. At the end of the walk is a short, steep hill. He had me hold his hand while he stood sideways on the scooter, and we rode it down the hill like a skateboard. Where does he come up with this stuff?