Friday, December 31, 2010

Lollipop, Lollipop oh lolli lollipop.....

It was Christmas Eve, I had 5 minutes inside the Walgreens to grab some last minute things.  It was a MADHOUSE inside I grabbed the first things I could find.

This may or may not have been a mistake:

They weigh a ton, or "a lot a lot" according to Maggie.

And they make big fat messes all over their faces, and hands and clothes and the floor.

Lesson learned.  Next year.....

No stop at Walgreens.

I mean, NO giant lollipops.

Lickity loo,


Apparently the fat lady has sung....

"I'm taking the van and the kids."  Jere said as he giddily grabbed his clothes, beany cap and rushed through the house insisting the kids HURRY.

I was fresh out of the shower and a bit bewildered by his sudden turn in emotions.

"Ummm why?"

"There is SNOW at Jens house, we have to go NOWWWWW!"

Within minutes the kids were bundled and they were in the car on the way.

Yeah, it was colder than a witches titty here in Mesa town today.  Cold enough in fact to have actual, honest to goodness SNOW, white stuff, fluff fall from the sky.

It wasn't cold enough to actually stick, but it certainly flurried about.

Sadly, Jere didn't get to the friends house in time.  And what he did see was as he drove through it on the freeway.  So, needless to say our "pictures" are a bit lacking.  My sister on the other hand has some FAB video of snow flurries in her neighborhood.  Cuh-razy!!

I just have to laugh at the pitiful picture of "snow."

But, needless to say, we're having a cold snap.
I turned the freaking heat on in the house, that's saying A LOT!
It's fun diddly fun to need to wear a coat.
Maggie still refuses.
What else is new.

Snow is falling all around,


Thursday, December 30, 2010

Parks and Princess'

Have I mentioned on here that anytime we asked Max what he was getting for Christmas, or shoot, anytime we ask him WHAT he got for Christmas, he replies "princess scooter."  Of course, there was no princess scooter for him, but apparently he REALLLLLLY wanted it.

Fast forward to Tuesday.

We had a playdate at the park with a friend of mine that is visiting town for Christmas.  And guess what my friends family had at the park?....


Lo the Heavens opened and a chorus of Angels did Sing!

And the singing angels and Princess faces did please the child.

And he was off like a shot.  He scootered and played and scootered some more all afternoon.  It was fabulous.

In the meantime I got to visit with my friend Joyce and do a little catching up.  It was so nice to see her and her little boy, who happens to be one month younger than Max.

We didn't get to sing any showtunes, but we managed to get a couple of pictures, though James was NOT having anything to do with it.

Oh "there you are, there you are, how disten..."  Sorry, just a little flashback to the show that brought us together many years ago.  We met in a Broadway performance class and did the show "The Mystery of Edwin Drood" together.  Basically our life and friendship revolves around showtunes and bad New Yawk accenting.  We so rule!

It may appear that we're laughing at James' tantrum or something, but of course we are NOT.  Ok fine, maybe we are.
Ah kids....gotta love 'em.

Anywhodle, it was a lovely afternoon spent in perfection weather, with good friends and good conversation.  Oh, and of course there was that PRINCESS SCOOTER!

Princess' and Playdates,


P.S.  BIG news...Max went the big "deuce" ON the toilet tonight.  It was AWESOME!  I'm so proud of him.  We might be ready to do this thing.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Max's BIG day

Christmas night, which should have been sleep filled and spectacular was NOT to be.

After getting the kids to bed by 7:00 (oh it's true) we attempted a movie.  I fell asleep, of course!  At 10:00 p.m. as we got up to go to bed, Max began screaming and crying.  There was no consoling him.  So, I broke the rule and put him in bed with us.  He fell asleep soundly.  I on the other hand had recieved the gift of Aunt Flo for Christmas and was suffering heinous cramping and kidney pain, so sleep was ellusive.  Somewhere around 2:30 a.m. Maggie joined the bed party, I was now squished between 2 kids and NOT sleeping.  Finally around 3 or 3:30 I insisted on putting Maggie back in bed.  I would have put Max back in bed, but Maggie was so busy screaming her ever loving gutts out at the top of her lungs about the injustices of not having ice cold water that we just locked her door and let her scream it out.  So now, I went to sleep on Julies bed, since she was gone, and Max and Daddy were asleep on my bed.  Maggie was screaming in her room for nearly an hour.  Eventually she wore herself out and I finally, fitfully fell asleep.  Around 6:30 or 7 Max came into Julies room crying. I picked him up, to which he offered up some wretching.  I jerked him away, and the wretching stopped and he seemed ok.  I set him on the bed, and he promptly barfed all over it.  WOOPS!  So, I picked him up, pulled the sheets off and we went to my room.  He barfed into the garbage can, and I decided to shower.
When I opened the shower door after washing away the "bad night", I found Max dead asleep on my bathroom floor, his bum in the air.  Maggie came in, woke him up, he barfed again and then promptly laid back down and fell completely asleep while I blew my hair dry.

Poor little BUBS.
I won't pretend for one second that I wasn't completely grossed out by the fact that he was laying on my bathroom floor.  'Cause bathroom floors are creepy and gross.

I finished getting ready, he barfed one more time, and then I had to go sing in my sisters ward.

Came home and Max was seemingly fine.  However, i spent the rest of the day at home, making sure he was ok, suffering through my cramps and cleaning out the kids room and all the Christmas crapola.  I got so much done.

Meanwhile...our friend in the Bishopric came over and gave us callings, in spite of us not being at church.  I am the new ward music chairman and Jere...drumroll the new Sunday School President.  He'll be amazing at it.  But, it didn't stop him from telling Todd to shut up and stop playing jokes on us.  Todd promises that he's serious.  So, Pres. Van patten it is. hahahaha

Anyway.....I got the house clean and the kids organized in time for Jere and Chris (our oh so handy and how would we live without him friend) to come and take down Max's crib.

My baby is growing up and this is how I feel about it.  I won't lie when I say, I was a little emotional watching them take the crib down.
I mean really, now I have NOWHERE to hang the diapers.  Now what?

There it goes.....
Had to make room for Max's BIG BOY BED

But really, how adorable is that?
Thanks Gramma Peggy.

Max was just beside himself with excitement that he had a BIG BOY BED!
And Maggie was pretty pleased as well.

Excuse me while I deal with my CUTENESS overload.

He was so excited to go to bed last night, he didn't even make a peep.  He kept asking, "can I sleep in my big boy bed?"  "it's ok, in my big boy bed?"  After assuring him that sleeping in his big boy bed would be perfectly ok, and even encouraged, he jumped right in and fell fast asleep.  Where he stayed until nearly 9:00 this morning.  Thank you very much.

Barfy morning turned into a playful afternoon and a PERFECT night of big boy dreams.

Baby bye byes and Toddler hellos,


Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas 2010

I will try to keep this simple and short.

Suffice it to say....we were blessed, are blessed, blessedly amazed at all our blessings!

We spent Christmas Eve at Gramma Peggy's house with a ridiculous smorgasboard of food for only 4 adults and 2 wee kids.  And an even more "ridiculous" array of presents.  Peggy loves to spoil these kiddos and she's really good at it. 

Hungry anyone?  We ate til we were sick, and there was still enough for an army.

Max and Maggie modeling their new Christmas jammies.
Which I bought last year on clearance and have been sitting in their drawer for a YEAR!

It just wasn't going to be complete until we had a fire going.

Looks like Jere copped himself a Christmas Feel.
He's so inappropriate.
He's gonna give my kids eye cancer. hahahha

Max opening one of FOUR trucks from Gramma Peg
We'll make a man out of him yet.

Maggie and her dolly.  Which she of course promptly ripped the hair ties out of and insisted on undressing.

Now these are apparently tights she can get behind.
Super adoralbe Princess tights.

Just trying to show what a haul they made at Grammas.
Really, we needn't have bothered with Santa.

Proof that Gramma and julie were indeed there.

So, after our sheer gluttony at Grammas, we came home and got the kids settled in bed so we could get to work on the big stuff.  THANK goodness for our friend Chris, who is the man know how behind Maggies bike and the trampoline and the kitchen.  He pretty much knows how to do and fix everything.  We'd be lost without him. But also, thank goodness for Sabe the babe and Julie and jere for all their effort on the trampoline as well, so I could stay inside and clean the house, put together their stockings and set up the presents.

Let the trampoline begin....

Apparently it's a little difficult to stretch those springs into place.

Ta-Da, we are complete.

Pretty good for a couple of "naughty" kids.

I love this cheesy little kitchen sooo much!
It fits absolutely perfectly into the one tiny sq. in. of space left in her bedroom.
And she's already made us numerous delicious dinners.

All we set, and by 3 a.m. i was in bed, whilst Jere and his elves foolishly hit up Denny's for some nasty 3 a.m. breakfast.

At 7:30ish Max stirred.  So, Jere went in, got him and woke Maggie up.  This did NOT make for the most triumphant and excited entry for her.  In fact, if you watched the video, she seems a bit, blah about everything.  The bike did ellicit a wee smile from her.  Max was allllll over his bike, and her bike too.

Maggie was pleased and didn't seem to notice that it was NOT a Princess bike.

**ADENDUM**  Late this afternoon while I was sweeping the backyard and the kids were playing on the trampoline Maggie said "Mommy, I wanted a Princess bike, why did Santa bring me a Mickey Mouse bike?"  I said, "Well, maybe he ran out of Princess bikes."  There was then some muttering under her breath and then she wailed out. "Mommy WHY did Santa give all the OTHER girls princess bikes?  I'm NEVER gonna have a Princess bike.  I HATE my Mickey Mouse bike."  And then proceeded to hang her head and mope and "cry" for several minutes.  I suggested that we could just send her bike back and then she wouldn't have one at all.  She didn't care for that idea either.  Man, way to make your Mom feel like total CRAP kid, THANKS!**

Max LOVED his bike and by the end of the day was a total pro.

She got right to work on cooking.

Her own computer.  Now maybe she'll leave ours alone.

Seriously.  He was MOST happy with his freaking dollar bag of balloons.
Oh the money I coulda saved.

Max was so cute when he saw the trampoline.
"OH a BIG trampowine for me."
Now, if only he'd just stay out there and play without INSISTING that I be his audience.
Missing the point kid, MISSING.THE.POINT.

Yep, they were "spoiled" and blessed.
Many thanks for all the Grandparents for making this possible!!

The rest of the day was spent at my sister Danas house where there was again, more food than any huge family could ever consume.  Games to be played, videos to be watched and bikes to be ridden.  It was a wonderful day, 'cause I lurve my family and spending time with them so much!

I lamely got only 4 pics.

Yeah, it IS Dec. 25th, and she IS barefoot in short sleeves.  It was balmy that day.

The kids rode and rode and rode and played to their hearts content.  It was so fun to see them finally know how to pedal and ride their bikes.  They had such a good time, and that made my heart so happy.

All in was a Christmas of perfection! 

Hope yours was just as great!

Santas out,


A "deuce."

You know, it was ok when Max removed his diaper while sitting at the kitchen table.  Not gonna make a big deal of it.

It was mildly amusing when he was standing there in front of Maggie shaking his "mandingle" yelling "see my pee pee Maggie, see my pee pee." To which Maggie was wholly and completely unamused or caring.  She was looking at something else, and when she finally DID respond, all she could say was.  "Sorry Maxi i was working on my lesson."

I may have completely cracked up when I looked over at him as he was saying at the top of his lungs "sticker on my pee pee Mama, sticker on my pee pee."  And he had taken a little pink flower sticker and stuck it on the tip of his peeper.  He'd made his own censor button, if you will. 

And, it was even funnier when he ripped said sticker off and OUCHED at the pain of it all.

Then, when he carefully got onto his "bike" for a freballin, nudey ride around the kitchen, I smiled.

However, after a minute it got suspiciously too quiet.  And then I heard the tell tell low grunt.  As I ran into the Kitchen...

It was NOT funny to find THIS:
my humblest apologies to any and all who will be completely grossed out by the picture you're about to see.  Look away if you must.


No really, I'm WARNING you!  This is Gross.

Jere said it was even too gross for him.
Consider yourself warned........

A POOP, a giant sized el duke-A, a hudinski IN my fridge.  He was standing with the fridge door open, bum facing the crisper drawer.  That is actual feces smudge ON my fridge.  And as a sidenote, why is it that until one tries to take a picture of their house they don't realize just how grossly dirty something is.  Clearly, time for a scrubbing of the refridgerator, for many reasons...obvi.
I was mortified, and also secretly laughing myself insane. Because really...WHO DOES THAT?  He got a smack on the bum, and then left little poop drops all the way to his room.  It was awesomeness personified.

When I told him he needed to go on the toilet, he got completely offended and screamed NO and cried.  Why the fear little guy, why the fear?

This vision of adorable was left in the poops wake, wondering WHY brothers are so gross:

Deuceily yours,


Friday, December 24, 2010

Before Tonight

Note: This is 4th new post today.  Don't miss out on the Christmas goodness.

Let me introduce you to a wonderful and amazing friend.  Everyone......

Meet ROB. 
The first time I ever saw Rob he was the lead in Crazy For You.  He blew my mind.  Then I got to work with him at our summer workshop and we've been great friends ever since.  He is RETARDED talented.  Incredible voice, ridiculous dancer, fab actor, amazing pianist, HYSTERICALLY funny, etc.  I really do have to wonder HOW I get so lucky for the friends that are in my life.

Oh wait, excuse me.
HERE is the real Rob.
Would have been real nice if he'd filled me in on making ugly faces.  So I don't look like a tool, all smiley while he makes THAT face.
He lives in L.A. and I don't get to see him enough in my life.

He wrote an InCREDIBLE Christmas Show called "Before Tonight" that is the telling of the Christmas Story in a pop, gospel way.  I wish I could properly explain it or do it justice.  Just know that it is really beautiful, and cool.

So, he decided to bring it "home" this year and perform it.  And I got to be part of the choir, along with my sisters, brother, brother in law and 2 nephews.  hee hee, I just love to say it out loud.  My silly family and all their singing ability.
Also really fun to see old friends I haven't seen in years and get to sing with them.  Hi you!

We had 2 rehearsals and then performed it twice.  The first night, not knowing what to really expect, I was literally blown away.  The soloists were phenomenal and the songs so cool and amazing.  I actually just busted out crying in the middle of one song.  And let me let you in on a little secret.  I am NOT easily moved.  I sort of have a cold black heart and generally never cry at music.  But, something in this was so beautiful, so amazing and so harmonically mind blowing I just couldn't help myself.  When we finished the audience lliterally jumped to their feet and clapped uncontrollably. 

I felt so blessed and so lucky to be part of yet another amazing new(er) work, and to have the friends I have.  And I'm thankful that being in this really helped me get some Christmas spirit.

So, because I love you all, I had Julie record the Shepherds song.  Why?  Because it is so freaking fun and amazing and fabulous.  It's a little long, but I promise it's great.  My brother is on the far left and my bro. in law is on far right (he's the high tenor practically singing soprano).  If you watch and look at me in the background...for the record I totally felt like I was so smiling, because I loved it so much.  Unfortunately I look like I'm smirking or grimacing.  Clearly, the curse of the frownie face strikes again.

Are you sort of dying over that gorgeous organ?  I know!

Ok, and also, a MUCH smaller clip.  This is my genious friend Rob singing his big solo and our wee choir backing him up.

May your days be Merry and Bright,


Catch ya on the flipside people.  Enjoy your Christmas eve/day.  Hope it's great for all of you.

Christmas lights and Nativities

We finally got out to see the lights at the Temple and Snowflake Alley (a neighborhood that our friends live in that is an amazing vision of Christmas spirit and a must see valley location).  I took a very FEW lame pics to document.

We went and picked Jere up from MCC, drove through McDonalds and then hit the light sights.  The kids of course LOVED seeing all the bright and beautiful lights.  There is nothing cuter than to hear them exclaim  "OH MY GOODNESS, see the bright lights." over and over.

This was the pose Maggie decided to throw up.
She was wearing her new sweater for the first time and apparently this was the appropriate look.

Sorry my camera sucks and you can NOT get the true feel for how awesome this neighborhood really is.

Every house has it's own theme and they go all out.

The kids were particularly impressed with this fake snow hill all ablaze.

Next we went to the Arizona Temple
Every year they put up l00's of thousands of lights and it's a huge attraction for the season.
There are nightly concerts and a light overload.

I particularly love the Christus back there.
Maggie knows that Jesus "lives" at the Temple and if we're ever near the grounds she MUST know where Jesus is and see him.

Pretty no?

Only 1 of 2 pictures I took of our actual trip to the Temple.

We had a lovely night of seeing lights though and I'm glad we went.

Next up....3rd Sunday with "our" Wright Family.  After a delicious dinner the kids all put on costumes (because that's how Gramma Jane roles...a boat load of costumes so ALL can be involved) and acted out the Christmas Story.


My two little cutie Shepherds.  Maggie actually willingly got dressed and participated this year.  Hooray.  Max happily put on the costume, but it lasted about as long as it took to take the pics.  Then, he was OVER IT and moved on.  The cutest was the heated debate between two of the boys over who got to be Joseph or not.  We finally told them there could be TWO Josephs.  Luckily the younger of the two forgot, or got over it and all was well.

So, there are narrators reading the story, and as each group arrives then we as the audience all sing songs that go along with that part of the story.  It's really quite fabulous.

Joseph & Mary with sweet cabbage patch Jesus.

Maggie was taking her job as a shepherd VERY seriously.

The Angels have arrived.
And apparently some angels totally use binkies.
Learn something new every day!

The Wisemen.
I love their headgear, it's so cute.

We are so thankful that the Wrights have kindly taken us in and allow us to be part of this fun tradition. Especially because they already have 27 grandkids of their own.

Bright lights big family,