Sunday, November 9, 2014

Sick House

News from our house this week:
Daddy bought us a new computer, one that doesn't have to be hooked up with a cord to the router.  One that doesn't have to be inside the dark closet.
One that doesn't get too hot unless there's a cookie rack underneath it.
So this week Mommy is finally back at the "blogging" thing again.  
 In other news, this kid is the only child that doesn't have "hand, foot, and mouth disease"
The other four are not allowed to touch him.... for now. 
The worst part of the virus is that there's nothing to stop the spread of blisters on hands, feet or in their mouth.  They are surviving on water, egg nog, popsicles, and ramen soup.  I think the combination of sickness and diet win me the Mom of the Year award for sure!!
 This guy keeps growing! 
I am sure he's grown a few inches every night this past week.
He sleeps like no bodies business.
He may also be on the list of "healthy" persons but I'm just waiting for it to appear since he loves to drink from everyone else's cups. 
This one has it the worst.  It's hard explaining to a child that you love them but don't want to touch them!?!  I thought it was a great idea to "quarantine" them to the couch while I spent the day scrubbing everything in the house.  (toys, walls, toilets, sheets, pillows, windows, door nobs, handles, etc.)  Cleanest my house has been in a long time... Maybe that's part of the problem....
Anyway, after finishing all that cleaning, I realized I would be doing it all over again after they got better. 
Notice Porter wants nothing to do with them, he subconsciously knows he's not sick yet.
Also included in the photo is our "old" computer...cookies rack and all.
On a positive note, I taught Joel how to play cribbage.  He thinks half the time I am making up rules, so I am forced to call the cribbage expert, i.e. "Mom and Dad" to settle any disputes. 
I learned to play in school, 7th grade.  Best math class ever!  And our family plays quite a lot.  I think most of my siblings play with their spouses every night.  I am one excited lady.  Love playing games.
And this month begins our family budgeting. I have tried to utilize coupons but not having a printer kind of put a damper on that.  All of my shopping for kids is done at thrift stores, and yet we find ways to spend lots and lots of money each month.  
I have a lot of learning to do.
Hope you are all having a wonderful week.  We love and miss you all! 
Germy hugs and kisses coming your way.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Sorry for the Delay

Well we have not been the best "bloggers" this last month. I was out of town for a week and things just fell apart including some computer issues, a flooding dishwasher, and the usual life of a family with 5 tornado children. To catch-you-up here are some picture.
Each of the Kids got a pumpkin to carve, they got to design it on the table first then carve it themselves.

And below are the finished products, with a little help from Mommy.
 L finally figured out a good recipe for making home-made flour tortillas. She made me some the first night she figured it out and I had to suddenly leave for work and took diner with me. Later that night I came home and she asked me how the tortillas were, I replied they tasted fine wondering if there was something wrong. I ate them not even knowing they were home-made. Though some wives might take offense to that, she took it as a sign she could finally make home-made tortillas as good as the store bought packs.   
Below are 2 pictures taken on Henry's nature walk around reflections lake. Home school is a great way to get out and do stuff in the name of educations.  I saved these photos upside down but try as I might, every time I tried to upload them to the blog, the blog automatically turned then right side up again.   Oh well.  

Porter decided to twist his napkin around his finger one night and created a perfect rose. He then brought it to Mommy and gave her a flower.

Sometimes the home school Gym class goes to the local skate park and the kids run up and down the ramps and jumps. 
 Calvin in growing fast. He just starting teething and becoming cranky, otherwise he has been the easiest and calmest baby yet. 
 Another Home School Activity at the Fire Department. Unfortunately they came home telling me how brave the firefighters were and how tough they were and we had to set a few things straight.    

 Halloween Costumes, Lydia wanted to be Tinker-Bell and Porter decided to be an Elephant.  
 Henry decided to be Pater Pan.

 We spent a day doing K-9 Training and certifications at my house. Some of the guys are working undercover so we had to photo shop their faces out with similar looking celebrities.
Found some boat plans online (see  the 24' Key Largo with a 40 HP 4 stroke is what I am leaning towards). Thinking about building a boat this winter. I have also been thinking about an epic-multi-leg-float-trip the whole length of the Yukon River and then weather permitting make the 120 mile charge across the bay to Nome. Its about 2300 miles and I would likely do it in stages over the course of a couple summers. They suggest the whole trip could take 90 days in a canoe, but that could be shortened by using the motor to cross several of the larger lakes and sections with a current speed of less then 3 MPH. Any takers? 

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Ending September

Daddy bought a 300 gallon oil tank, stand, and fuel oil from a co-worker this week at about 1/2 price new.  Topped off our own fuel tank for the winter (for those nights were get lazy and decide not to fire up the wood boiler).  He let the kids run wild while he drained the tank and loaded the truck. Upon completion, Daddy rounded up the kids to leave and found he was missing one. Porter was later found playing on this John Deere Lawn Mower making noises and trying to turn the wheel. Grand-Pa Thomas would be proud.  Anyone need a 300 gallon oil tank and stand?
We usually have snow on the mountains by this time, but the weather have been sunny and warm extending fall for a few weeks.
 The kids are a big help. Sometimes people think we are crazy with 5 kids. Now days it seems anything more the 2 kids in a family is strange but we have found the older ones really help out, at least when they want to.

 As part of Henry's Home School he went on a field trip with Elizabeth's class to a salmon hatchery where they got to see how they mix eggs and salmon sperm to and then learn about the life cycle of salmon.

 Calvin, shown below, is really starting to make facial expressions and really giggles when you talk to him. He has a joyful disposition.

Daddy completed his 2 week class on Collision Investigation and learned to do things like estimate the speeds and angles of vehicles involved in crashes and damage classification. Ended up with a 97% overall grade for the 80 hour class.  Thinking about pursuing the other 5 classes required to become a collision re-constructionist. Eyeing it as a possible retirement job to do between missions.  We will be getting 6 PFDs this year (about $11,000 total). We decided to put almost all of it towards the mortgage. We are trying to be as frugal as possible with a goal to be completely debt-free in about 6 years. We are constantly thankful for our many blessings in life. I know some financial advisors suggest at the current mortgage interest rates (2.9%) you should invest any extra income in the stock market (which currently averages returns of 6-12%) rather than pay off your mortgage. But we have chosen to follow the Prophet's counsel to strive to get out of debt first.
That's it for this week. See you next week.       

Monday, September 22, 2014

Fall Colors, Testimony Sharing

Fall is here, unfortunately fall usually only lasts about 1 week here in Alaska. We still enjoy it with an outing to a playground.  The kids are doing well.  Henry is doing well in home-school. Elizabeth is doing well in third grade. She forgets her homework from time to time but I think we all did at her age.  

I received a phone call from a telemarketer and turned the tables on her. We had a nice conversation about whether she was calling from India or somewhere in the United States. She indicated she was calling from the United States and ultimately I narrowed it down to Florida by guessing states. I asked her what church she attended? She replied she had recently found a church she likes, which gave her everything she wanted in religion. She indicated she was not supposed to be talking about personal things while at work, and at one point I heard a click on the phone and she immediately changed the conversation to something about my preference in voter something or other, then just as quick as she changed she then reverted back to our conversation. I realized she had to do that when her supervisor listened in for a brief moment. After a few minutes talking about her new found religion and exactly what it was she wanted out of religion, I learned she was taking the discussions with the LDS Missionaries.  I was still a little skeptical until I asked her if she knew the difference between a temple marriage and a marriage outside the temple? She replied that she was told a temple marriage lasts forever, while a marriage outside the temple ends upon death.  I spoke with her about baptism and Moroni's Promise in the end of the Book of Mormon. She said she wanted to be baptized.  I challenged her to be baptized and she agreed.  She asked how she could be baptized? I explained how the missionaries could make all the arrangements so she could be baptized by someone holding the proper authority. I then suggested she call the missionaries over and when they arrive, to ask them when she could be baptized, and also ask why they had not asked her yet. She agreed and said she was excited to read the promise in the Book of Mormon.  She said she had been praying for spiritual guidance and said she felt she was on the right path.  Having spoken with her for about 15 minutes, said she needed to get back to work so she did not get in trouble.  She said goodbye and hung up never once asking me any telemarketer questions or surveys.

I hope things go well for her, "Sharika from Florida". Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) I don't think she will have her current job for very long.

In the past I have always hung up on telemarketers, or played pranks on them. Now I feel I may have been wasting opportunities to share my testimony. No, I still will not participate in the surveys, but if they will listen, I might just take the opportunity to open my mouth and bear my testimony a little more often.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Week Off work- Work.

Lydia figured out how to take pictures with Daddy's phone during Church. Only 2 of the 100 she took were useable.

Below is the retaining wall/ planter bed I spent half the week building. It wraps around both sides of the deck and I planted rhubarb roots. Hopefully next year the rhubarb will grow and fill in bordering the deck.  

Henry is practicing his reading for baby Calvin.
Lydia is quite the drama queen, even when she is asleep.
I got the garage cleaned out so we can start parking in the garage for the winter. We bottled up several gallons of homemade apple sauce and apple butter. We tore down the green house and stored everything for next year.  We even covered the chicken run with a tarp to keep some of the snow out.  It was a good week of work while I was "off work".  Now I am starting a 2 week  - 80 hours Collision Reconstruction Class for work. This is the first of 3 classes. If I pass all three of the 2 week courses, I might have a good retirement job working for insurance companies as a Collision Reconstructionist.  
That's it for this week. 

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Playing Catch Up

First, I must apologize for neglecting the blog for a few weeks. Due to my unique work, and duties, I had to work 24 days straight during the State Fair and averaged over 15 hours of work a day. I ended up working 138.25 hours of overtime in 2 weeks on top of my 80 hours of normal work.  Hopefully the pay check will reflect my hard work but almost everything in life was put on hold for the past 3 weeks.   Fortunately I earned myself a week off of work to get a few last projects done around the house before winter hits.  I just started a retaining wall/planter wall around the deck I should have completed next week. Lisa took Henry out of school and started home schooling him. He was in a class of 33 kids and was far advanced compared to his peers. While his peers were reading picture books consisting of one sentence per page, Henry was reading chapter books at a third grade level. Although its more work for Lisa, she feels it best to keep him learning rather than waste a year waiting for his peers to catch up with him.    
 Lydia loves to get into Mommy's make up and tries her best when we are not looking.

 The kids all went to the State Fair for some fun in the sun.

 Blue Berry picking turned into blue berry eating.  Mommy was the only one who had the self control to not eat every berry picked.

 Elizabeth had her 8th birthday, got some presents, and a rabbit.

 Cabbages from the garden.
Elizabeth was baptized on Saturday. She is growing up fast.
Till next week.....