Monday, July 30, 2012

Landon Brough - Six Years Old

Landon Brough
Landon loves...

wrestling with Dad every day after work.
playing with friends
taking care of ellie or owen
surprising us with a job extra - well done
feeling like he's done something amazing
running, tumbling, climbing, dancing, swimming, biking, moving, 'go!go! go!'
making ellie and owen smile or laugh
playing chase around the upstairs loop with ellie and owen, or mom, dad, april...
being a super helper
hearing stories of when he was littler
watching movies
listening to music - crazy and calm and in between
special breakfasts
exceptions to the rules :)

We love our Landon oh so much!!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Landon's Dino Party

(Jordan helped me figure out the dinosaurs so I could make these invites to copy this)

Waiting for the party to start...

Decorated bags for dinosaur eggs, prizes, etc. 
Dinosaur 'Don't Eat Pete' 
Dinosaur cake walk (with prizes, not cakes :)

Paleontologists at work - breaking open their dinosaur eggs

And making some more dino eggs to take home

Pizza and lemonade and silly 6 year old knock knock jokes

A dinosaur egg hunt

Hot lava cupcakes

And presents :)

And one happy Landon!

Tooth troubles

What's the difference between a lion with a toothache and a thunderstorm? One roars with pain and one pours with rain :)
I've been on the lion side these days with a crazy tooth that is having a hard time healing from a root canal last month. With a few dentists visited, a few prescriptions tried, and lots of days of roaring pain... I'm hoping I'll find a solution soon!

School time Week 5, 6,7,8...?

Week 5 of school time was the week of Independence day so we learned "Where are you from?" and  "I'm American" and then just reviewed the things we'd learned so far.
Week 6 (shapes) stretched into week 7 (and 8? I'm losing track these days!) and about that time we decided we were ready to have a summer break from our own school time even :)

So, here's our latest and last school time animoto for the summer --

We've sure had fun with this!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Quiet Time

Jordan offered to be in charge of the kids while making dinner on Sunday. After the experience he offered to watch the kids every evening this week for a little while after work so that I could have a little quiet time. :)

Tonight I brainstormed dinosaur birthday party ideas, and then watched a great show from BYU broadcasting about my favorite Dar Williams while I made dinner. What a treat!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Signed, Sealed, Delivered... and a surprise

We got the official word today that everything is complete on our Provo house sale (Hooray!)


Also, at dinner last night Landon stopped the conversation with a sudden gasp and an alarmed look on his face.  "I just remembered! I forgot to take the snails back outside!" Apparently, he had brought his collection inside for a little jaunt on the kitchen counters... so unless they managed to find their way down and back outside on their own,  I suppose that is where they will live out their little snail lives!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

A little House of Your Own

Ellie in a little house of her own

Just found this cute picture of Ellie from Grammie and Grandpa's house --finding a little house of her own after reading this sweet book with Grammie.

A Day at the Beach

After a canoe ride,  hanging out with Mom

Here's an Animoto of a fun evening at the Hyrum Reservoir --

Mr. Mischief

He looks so innocent :)
Owen has just entered a new stage of major mischief making. At the same time, he's had a sudden growth spurt allowing him to reach just high enough to  make the old safe places not-so-safe anymore (like this morning's leftover cheerios neatly cleared from her place by Ellie to the counter, and not so neatly cleared by Owen from the counter to the floor). Books and more books, couch cushions, markers and crayons, cutting boards, washcloths, pots and pans, towels and bibs... our home floor coverings are varied and many these days!

Fortunately, he still gives the best hugs ever which make up for quite a lot of mischief :)

And just for fun -- Owen finishing up his favorite spinach smoothie

The Bike Train

Jordan's new birthday present - a trailer bike for Landon - the perfect addition to our family adventures!

The wait is over/ A big weekend/ Farewell Provo House

Landon  (three years old) in the treehouse
After signing our closing papers and sending them off, we traveled down to Provo this weekend to say farewell to our old home.  We had a backyard campout, took care of selling our appliances, and enjoyed one last stay in our little Provo house.

Someone had taken a few bricks off of the front of the playhouse in the backyard - a memento I suppose for a sweet little house full of moments they wanted to remember.  I'd felt that too at one point - searching around for pieces to keep to remember later on that this little home was once here and was once an important part of our life. (The fruit trees we planted in the backyard? The miniature rose bush from the front porch? The address numbers I painted? A cupboard knob from our refinishing? A few snails for Landon? :)

But mostly on this trip, I was noticing all of the little things that once seemed so important but will soon be gone with the rest of the house. The light switch cover in the living room that I debated about splurging on, the baseboards that drove us crazy for over a year until we finally finished cleaning/sanding/painting and replacing them. The spot in the wood floor we installed where the boards didn't quite meet up right. The master bedroom walls that took months to clean after Landon's Easter Sunday Sharpie spree. The planter in the back that filled my summer mornings with weeding.  The corner in front that we tamed from a jungle into a garden spot - that has since grown back into a jungle once again. The carefully chosen paint colors in each room... So many little things that sure seemed important - and maybe some of them were. But life just keeps moving on. It was a good reminder for me to pay attention to the things that are going to matter for more than just a little while.

We sure had some happy times in that little house. So many of our memories there are of projects, improvements, planting and clearing. Chopping down and planting trees, scrubbing and cleaning, planning and deliberating, sanding and painting... If nothing else (and soon there really will be nothing else), those are pretty sweet memories to keep.

That little tiny tree behind the mailbox is not so tiny now -- the mailbox is almost completely hidden now and you have to practically climb inside the tree just to get to the mail!


Landon has been excited about starting collections lately. Mostly he's had various rock collections: look-alike rocks, tenny-tiny rocks, colorfully painted rocks, really cool looking rocks...  But on our quick trip to Provo, he started a new collection --

Landon's Provo house snails

Fortunately, the snail collection didn't travel back home with us :)

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

A just-the-girls adventure/ Ellie & Mommy 4th of July Celebrations

I had an appointment in Provo to see my dentist on the day after the 4th, so we decided to make an event of it. Jordan, Landon and Owen had a couple of boys days at home with some fun celebrating along with Nathan and April while Ellie and I headed to Provo for some girls time. It has been pretty rare for me to have one-on-one time with Ellie so it was really great to get to focus just on her.

We filled Ellie's long time request of sleeping at a hotel with breakfast and swimming in the morning, we had a little bit of resting time,  I saw the dentist, and we had a dawn to dusk 4th of July celebration (quite possibly the longest day of Ellie's life, and fortunately a happy one for the little trooper :)

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Happy Birthday Jordan!

Jordan got back from a week in New York on his birthday -- with all of the hugs and cuddles and flips and twists and wrestles... you can see that we missed him and were excited to celebrate with him!

Making a fish birthday cake (Landon's pick :) 
Hooray to have Jordan home! And a birthday BBQ celebration 

Bucket Game

The bucket game is played at last... now Ellie can think about other things  like a great canoe ride to come. 
Jordan had the day off on Friday, so we had a day full of working and playing and celebrating. Ellie woke up in the morning at 7:00 with an idea in her head of playing a game with our whole family and our 4th of July decoration buckets. The rules were clear and orderly -  

"We stand in a row and we all stand in order, first Owen, then Ellie, then Landon, then Mommy, then Daddy. Then we pass the  buckets down the row."

Somehow throughout the day - though the rules were oft repeated and in great detail -  we stayed so busy or one member of the family wasn't available or we just couldn't do it right now...  Sweet Ellie just kept trying. Reminding us, instructing us, detailing the order for us to play her game. Finally, when we arrived at Hyrum reservoir that evening about 6:00 (after an entire day with every Ellie conversation including  game preparations and with the addition of April into the game's order), we climbed out of the car and before heading to the canoe and paddle board rentals we played Ellie's game. We lined up - Ellie, Landon, April, Mommy, Daddy ("Owen can just walk around actually"). And we passed the two buckets down the line.

"That's the end of the game!" 

And I think what a relieved Ellie to have this off her mind at last (next time I hope we'll remember to listen sooner!)

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Summer Reading

Summer Reading
My most distinct memories of summertime as a kid are of summer reading for the Provo library. Browsing up and down each aisle, filling my arms till I could hardly add another book to the top of the stack.  We'd come home with piles of books each week. I'd lay mine out side by side and order them with my top picks first and set out my plan. Then I'd fly through them just as quick as I could, recording each title on my summer reading chart - each book bringing me closer to the next prize. A McDonalds ice cream cone coupon? A Wendy's frosty? A bookmark? Pencil?

Encyclopedia Brown

Landon has discovered chapter books and is thrilled with both the idea that he can read chapter books and with the fun of crossing off each picture of his summer reading chart and taking it in for a prize. Hooray for summer reading :)

Friday, July 6, 2012

Table Slide Video

I love seeing these two being little buddies!

Monday, July 2, 2012

while i was out...

lemonade stand
I came home from a run last week and found Landon and Ellie here with a lemonade stand all set up and ready for business -- delicious strawberry lemonade for just one penny a cup. :)
A few days ago I'd been doing laundry downstairs while the kids played. Coming up the stairs, I heard Landon's heavy breathing mixed with Ellie directing and happy Owen sounds... I got to the top of the stairs to find our couch had been moved from the front room to it's new location in the center of the reading room. funny kids!

Week 4 Days of the week

as dias da semana

Our latest Animoto with the kids practicing the days of the week - os dias da semana --

Ellie is an expert at picking up pronunciations. She often corrects Landon and I if we mispronounce a new word we're learning. Also, she always says "Com licençafor 'excuse me'. Today she was asking Jordan 'How do you say Com licença in Portuguese? (I think the phrase has become so natural to her she forgot that it was Portuguese at all!)