Days 2015

Days 2015

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Here's to New Starts!

 Cooper had a very special day June 6th.  He was baptized and became a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  He had a pretty awesome day all around because he was baptized in the morning (with several of his friends--all of the children getting baptized that day were from our neighborhood), then had the first BBQ of the summer with our cousins in our backyard, then rushed off to a baseball game where he had some great hits. 
 Here is Cooper with Mark, Bishop Ryan Peterson and Brother Erich Seal.  Mark has LOVED serving with these men in the bishopric and this picture is bittersweet because of his release as we prepared to move.  It was meaningful to us that they were all together at the baptism. 
Our sweet silly boy on his baptism day.  He's making a face because I was holding his hand.
Five hundred and sixty or so miles away Cooper's cousin Jaxon was getting baptized in Frenchtown, Montana.  Too bad that we were too far apart to do this together, but it's fun that they shared a baptism day. 
We tried our best to keep busy in May and June as we waited for our house to get done..  In this picture Mark and Boss are helping prep fire hydrants and curbs on our street for painting for our friend's Eagle Project.

Luke and his Tanner-buddy hiding out in the shade. (Tanner calls him Lukey.)

Mark, the boys and I spent A LOT of time at the ball park.  Boston's games pretty much rocked our week.  Sometimes we brought the other kids, sometimes not.  Leslie was allowed to stay home if she babysat.  I truly have enjoyed baseball season and have learned a lot about the game along with the boys.  Boston's team, the Nationals, ended up 6th out of 28 teams (just in the Lehi Mustang League!!) and so they get to advance to the State level.  This week we are playing other teams from Utah county.  Today we had a great win and a bad loss, more games tomorrow.  Next year should be awesome because our boys will get to be on the same team.

Luke wanted to try out the dugout.

Me and my little baseball buddy.

After watching all these Mustang games, Cooper was chomping at the bit to start his season of Machine Pitch.  He has been hitting like crazy (not much fielding going on at this level), partly because his team has several no-shows so sometimes they play with only 5-6 kids, which means he gets to bat a TON.
At his last game Cooper hit a few pop flies so he was a little frustrated, but he used that pent up aggression on the field.  He retrieved a hit in right field, was about to hand it off to the 2nd baseman (he was standing pretty close to 2nd) when he realized that he could just tag the runner.  The runner happened to be his close friend, Miles.  He chased Miles down and tagged him with a flying tackle right before third.  Hilarious, although he got his arms pretty scraped up.  I guess all that football practice counts as cross-training.
When June hit I finally started packing.  I very much enjoyed going through my hope chest and unburying lots of sentimental items, some that I threw away, laughing that I ever kept, others won a spot back in the box.  I particularly laughed over some of my grade school diaries and had to message a few choice excerpts to my siblings.  
Remember this one guys?  This was a picture book that belonged to my Grandma Haynes.  She rocked us and read it to us over and over.  I could not BELIEVE how vividly I still remember the pictures and the bright colors.
Roses from boys, mostly Mark.  They were starting to disintegrate, so I pitched them and they are now part of the cloud!
 A little tidbit from my seminary journal.  I guess she was my project.  She pointed out that this was the day before her birthday, so maybe I was counting it as a gift?  Some sister.  I think the underlined ONE is humorous.
I do remember being super jealous that my brother Jake got to do scouts and I got nothing.  I was bored I guess.

Love my illustration here.  Kid in bed eating candy, drinking pop, getting presents and watching TV.  The other funny part of the story is that all my siblings got the chicken pox from sleeping in my bed while I was at a 3 day summer camp--with a mild case of chicken pox.  I thought they were fleas or mosquito bites or something. 
Leslie had a very very fun June.  Here she is at EFY (a religious summer camp for teens at BYU) with her best friend Abigail.

While Leslie was away three of the four weeks in June for two girls' camps and EFY, we were having some fun of our own.
Pay Dirt from sliding home.
Boston learned how to make homemade popsicles.
He also experimented with the recipe on the back of the lime bottle.  I LOVE his expanded version--resembles the corny comments I put on my first set of recipe cards I copied out for college.
I love this picture of Leslie.  She had one week home between camps, and guess what she decided to do?  She volunteered for two days at the boys' scout camp.  Here she is walking some other scouts to where they needed to be.  She ran obstacle course and flag stuff.  What a good sister!  And now they have matching T-shirts.

Mom had yet another trip to the dentist.  This one was quite eventful.  Cooper's cleft specialist recommended that we get his two front teeth pulled this summer since his adult front teeth were not going to push them out.  They were not loose at all.  He has never been novacained before, and the needles to the front gums were pretty painful.  (He even swatted the dentist away at one point.)  Well, after they had been numbed, he was still kind of mad about the whole thing, and also curious about the numbing sensation.  I was sitting in the corner, watching him feel his numb chin and lip, etc.  Then he declares, "I'm not going to let that dentist touch me again!" and I see his elbow cranking up and down hard.  That stinker PULLED his OWN not-loose-tooth.  He was mad and scared and kind of amazed that he couldn't feel it I guess, and I had been warning him for months that he had better wiggle those front teeth or the dentist was going to have to do it.  I'm just glad he at least got the right one!  The assistant stopped the bleeding and the dentist came in with a laugh and pulled the other one.  (We did, of course, pay for both extractions.)  Macy decided to join the club.  For my slightly more dramatic child, this first tooth loss was ironically very simple.  It was wiggly and she asked Leslie to pull it.  Ok.  And it was out.  No fuss, no muss.  We like 'em low maintenance around here!  Leslie has pulled two more of them since this first one came out, all three in a row on the bottom.
We took lots of trips to Spanish Fork to check on the construction.  The kids are testing out the carpet.  (Our old place had rough berber and hard laminate.)
AAAAND.......we became the proud new owners of a brand new house.  Let the moving begin!
 At this point I have been way too busy to take many pictures, etc., but here are a few things I'd like to remember.  

Moving day was crazy, as usual.  Mark likes to do this thing pretty much every time we move where he gets antsy and starts actually moving before the scheduled time, so that I'm not as packed and organized as I would like to be.  This time he got the key early and had me and the boys help him unload a second moving truck he got (so that he could start moving pre-plan, in the morning) when I thought I would be packing my kitchen, leaving all the heavy lifting to the menfolk later in the day. He was in the doghouse a bit for that, especially when he had me and the boys help with the third load on cleaning day.  To make up for it, though, he also helped me clean, which is usually my job. Luckily I also have AWESOME visiting teachers, friends and neighbor gals who cleaned, fed us, babysat multiple times, AND packed.  You ladies could have crossed the plains--bunch of workhorses! 

There were also several menfolk who went above and beyond in the heavy lifting department, both in our old neighborhood and our new.  This is our first time being moved by the High Priests Group instead of the younger, possibly fitter Elders' Quorum.  I must say I was impressed by their sticking power.  Mark and I really felt the love that the entire bishopric, including Mark's replacement, helped load and unload, some multiple times.  Mark said they must have really wanted to make sure he was good and gone--escorting him beyond their borders, etc.;)

After the dust had settled and we were in our new place, we got invited to a 4th of July BBQ in our new neighborhood.  We were supposed to bring a side.  I couldn't decide what to make and had actually already unpacked the kitchen, so I made baked beans AND a chocolate sunbeam cake (mostly because I was craving chocolate and would have been put out if no one else brought some.)  As Leslie expressed some surprise at our double offering, Mark said something I thought was profound.  "Isn't it nice that we belong to an "AND" family?  We bring baked beans AND cake."  As I thought about that, I was moved to tears thinking of all the "AND" families that helped us move.  I want to do better at going the 2nd mile and being more generous with my time because of your examples.  
Here are some awesome AND teenagers.  Leslie got picked up from girls camp the morning of moving day.  Mark hustled her home, I gave her some short instructions "Pack the pantry!" as Mark yanked me back out the door to go unload the truck.  Well, with a little help from her friends and a couple of mine, Leslie packed that WHOLE stinking kitchen.  I think she said, for example, that Abigail here on the left put in FIVE HOURS.  Incredible.  These gals will make great visiting teachers some day!

Two days after we moved Leslie and I took a break and went to welcome our new little niece, Hallie.  Hallie is only the 4th girl cousin (including Leslie and Macy!) on the Haynes side, with 11 boys.  So excited for Duke and Natalie--Hallie is their first.

Then my first full week at home began, with Mark going back to work and leaving me alone with boxes and boxes and five hooligans.  Four, actually, because Leslie was busy at band camp.  I was busy unpacking and I hear, thumpity thumpity thumpity.  HAhahahah.  Shrill giggling.    And what do you suppose they were doing?  Yes, sliding down the stairs.  They made a nest at the bottom. 

So, I eventually kicked them out of the house.  That wasn't a great plan either because we have no lawn.  We also happen to be next door to two empty lots (come be our neighbor!), one of which has a really tempting dirt pile.  Can you tell where this little stinker was playing with his brothers?  In this picture he is hiding under our back deck in his little fort.  Macy wasn't immune to the call of the dirt, either, and she promptly lost one of her favorite flip flops while trudging through it.  It has yet to resurface.  This morning, since it was bath day and I wanted them occupied while I organized the garage, I let them play in the dirt pile for two solid hours.  Sometimes you have to make your fun. 
We had a fun filled 4th of July.  We took the family to the Provo Freedom Festival parade for the first time--it is a huge parade.  I was pretty nervous about the crowds, the kids, not being able to sit down or see, etc. but it worked out fine, I only got yelled at once, the weather was pleasant, and the kids were very good, mostly because the parade was interesting to watch and I had warned them ahead of time that they probably wouldn't get any candy.  We spent the afternoon with Grandpa and Grandma Day, unpacking, and hanging shelves.  Then that night we went to the Provo fireworks and watched on the lush green Provo temple lawn.  (The kids mostly wanted to play on the lawn--they were starved for the green.)

The reason we braved the crowds was to see our little superstar Leslie marching with her band for the first time.  This was also her first time playing while in uniform.  She said the hat felt weird but the gloves were fine.  The band teacher had been smart and made them run stairs, etc.earlier in the week to wear in their shoes.  They had been hoping to wear their short sleeved polos because the weather had been soooo hot, but it turned out to be under 95 degrees that morning (yikes! That's a pretty steep number for the rule!) so on went the long sleeves.  She said it wasn't too bad.  She also said the main thing she kept thinking about, besides the music ("Washington Post March" by Sousa with intermittant breakouts of "Uptown Funk") was how funny they must all look with water dripping down their chins every time they got squirted with a drink (because they can't break rank to wipe their faces or even change expression).  Leslie is so tall and the drink lady rather short that one time she missed her mouth completely.

Here is a clip of when they marched by.  I apologize for my excitement making me forget to focus the camera on the subject, but you'll get the general idea.
I've spent a lot of time arranging and decorating--it's been years since I've given more than a passing thought to that kind of thing--so fun.  My entry is almost done--it still needs a rug--but I am enjoying my new little red table.  We were smart and sold some furniture before we moved so I have a fun new furniture budget.  I assembled the table myself!  Leslie also has been saving money to decorate her room and bought herself a bedspread and a headboard with shelves.  She has been helping Mark with some building/assembling projects so she decided she could build her headboard.  It took her four hours--no easy task--but she did the whole thing herself.  Super proud of her!  She said her sewing class from last semester helped, I think she meant with understandings the spatial patterns of how the pieces fit together, also maybe the following directions?

A few days ago we had some rain and that evening saw the brightest double rainbow I've ever seen, fully framing our house.  I think it's a good omen!

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Barrel of Monkeys

Guess who just turned 8?
He looks a little shell shocked here, but he did have a great birthday.
Here he is with some of his buddies.  Cooper wanted to have monkey bread and some of those boys were pretty curious as to what that might be.  I made a double batch because last year Cooper complained of only getting one helping.  It turned out great but I forgot that you aren't supposed to put candles into a hot dessert and they melted super fast, so this was a rushed blowing out of the candles, after which we tried to scrape some of the wax out of the carmel. 

The skies stayed clear long enough for us to play Mexican Jumping Beans, where you stack cans of beans and try to see who can jump the highest.

Boston's got hops.

He asked for a new football, a football kicking tee, and orange cones to make and end zone.  One of his friends also gave him new football gloves.  The new green Wilson football went back to the store, Mark said it was way too hard and pointy on the ends and he would give someone a black eye with it.  So, I need to track down the same kind he already got for Christmas and has plumb worn out--the sides are splitting.  (He also got a scout shirt and his own set of scriptures, which he has also been asking for.)

Cooper also had an end of year presentation with his class.  This is his best friend Benjamin.  Cooper's teacher gave all the children a word picture with their name in the middle and a bunch of words that described them, and presented them in front of the whole class.  It was really sweet.  When the teacher was presenting Benjamin's, she said, "And Benjamin is such a loyal friend."  Benjamin, who was standing in front of the class, craned his neck and I could hear him say, "Where's Cooper?" and gave him a big old smile.  SO cute.  You can see the video of Cooper's presentation at this link below.  I was a little exasperated that his main quality was "Hilarious" but also very proud that the teacher pointed out his integrity, and I think he was the only kid she said that about. 

I apologize that I turned the camera halfway through.  Mostly just listen. 
Luke enjoyed wearing a prop from the class presentation.  Cooper's not the only one who is hilarious around here.
This year the school had an end of the year dance festival, with the different classes learning dances from around the world.  It was pretty fun to watch and not so crowded since it was outside.  Macy's class did Mexico and danced the Mexican Hat Dance and the Macarena.  They were supposed to wear bright skirts and were given flowers for their hair.  Macy's good friend Madison is the girl on the right end.  Cooper's class did a pretty involved dance from India, and Cooper wore an oversized white shirt and jeans, the girls had bright scarves.  So handsome, and his dance was pretty involved.  I was on the other side of the field so I didn't get a picture of his, and Boston's class was moving too fast, running around, etc.  Boston's class wore green and did some Irish riverdance type stuff.  I also enjoyed watching some of my primary kids in the older grades.  The sixth graders were super impressive and did the West Coast Swing to "Footloose" (Lehi's favorite song since the movie was filmed here.)  They paired them up and everything.  Luke and I had a great time watching the whole show.
They were kind enough to hold the Kindergarten award ceremony right after the festival, since the parents were already there.  Isn't she cute, looking all bashful?
 For Memorial Day we took our traditional trip to Fillmore for Mark's family reunion.  The kids had a lot of fun playing with cousins, swimming (except for Boston, who was recovering from stitches on his arm--he hopped out of a tree and was impaled pretty good by a branch stub--we had to go to the ER) and eating yummy stuff.  Here are some family pictures.
Three of the cousins are missing because they are on missions in Kiribati, South Korea, and Brazil.  Blake in the grey suit and red tie, just got home from Oregon, and Kelsey (next to Leslie) is about to leave to North Carolina.
Mark with his siblings and the folks.
For Mother's Day I did a fun photo shoot for my inlaws. (Also because I want a nice new picture of them for our new house.)  They were good sports to do it in the rain, and I think the pictures actually turned out better because we had to use an umbrella.
This one is my favorite.  Grandma Frances and Grandpa Day.
Leslie has had a very fun month with Youth Conference and field trips, and next week she has EFY summer camp at BYU and TWO separate girls camps.  Here she is with some of her friends.

We pulled the kids out of school one day last week to take them to the Payson Temple Open House.  (It was a bit bright for pictures, so we're all squinting in these.)  This temple will be our temple when we move, only about ten-fifteen minutes from our home.  It's very beautiful and large and light, and Leslie and I loved noticing all the pioneer type details--lots of quilt block motif, antique style furniture, needlepoint and bright colors.  So beautiful for such a special place.  Maybe my kids will get married here?  In a long, long time. 

On the way to the temple I was telling the kids about our nephew, Spencer, who has almost completed his mission in the very isolated, very third-world Kiribati islands.  I had just read a letter his parents had posted online, where he described his incredible meal, as good as the comedian Brian Regan's "Thousand Dollar Plate" bit.  His mission president had come to visit their island and brought them some apples and a loaf of bread.  Spencer said it was the most awesome thing he had ever eaten in his life.  Anyway, while the kids were mulling this concept of gratitude over, one of them pipes up, "I don't get it.  Why was he so excited about eating an apple?"  Boston answered with more than a little scorn in his voice, "Wouldn't YOU be glad?  If you'd just been eating monkeys and stuff?"

Monkeys, no.  But in another recent letter he said that they were living off of fish jerky and coconuts until the boat came in with supplies.  But what do you do?  The Gospel's true, so they are there to share it.

Luke overheard us talking about monkeys.  The last month or so the kids have been motivating him to do things or go places by scaring him with imaginary threats, like, "Quick!  A big doggie is coming!"   I've tried to put a stop to it, but at some point they told him that monkeys were scary.  Of course, with us about to enter a sacred place, he was starting to get very loud and wound up in the car.  He put on his best tough guy voice and growled/yelled, "I puncha monkeys inna face!"  over and over.  Finally, trying to get him in a calmer mood so he wouldn't be loud and rowdy once we were in the temple, I told him, "Luke, no.  We don't punch.  We be nice."

He thought about that for a second, and in the same gruff voice he asked, "I puncha monkeys inna face........pleeeease?"

Amidst all that rough and tumble, he is super lovey.  Yesterday all three boys climbed onto my bed as we were waking up, and were wrestling a bit.  Luke, laughing hysterically, tucked one boy's head under each arm in a headlock and with a big smile declared, "I love you guys!!"