Friday, November 20, 2009

Charley Turns 10!

Our little girl is growing every day. I sure wish she would stop! Charley turned 10 this year in the midst of our swine flu epidemic and she was not feeling well on her birthday. Althouh she recovered quickly she had to wait until everyone else to get better before we could celebrate. She took it all in stride and was happy to be able to celebrate last week with her cousins. Ronny and I decided she was old enough for her first i-pod and so for her birthday she received one filled with Hannah Montana music. She has enjoyed rocking out ever since. We love listening to her sing along to the music while doing the dishes each evening. It sure beats the complaining we used to listen to! We love you Charley!

Vacuum Cake

We have some good friends who live around the way from us who have an adorable little guy who just turned 3. He loves vacuums, maybe loves isn't strong enough, he's a little "0cd" about vacuums. Well for his birthday his parents asked if I would make him a vacuum cake. I had planned to do a 3-D cake but then the kids came down with the flu so we had to do something simpler. Ronny was a trooper and drew me a picture of a vacuum (my art skills are not up to par for what I need) and here is what we came up with. Thankfully he enjoyed the cake and actually let his parents cut it up and serve it.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Oink Update

Joseph was prescribed Tamiflu and was sick for 5 days. We think with the combination of 2 asthma medications and the Tamiflu he skirted the worst of it. Ben and Charley ran fevers this week and had coughs and sore throats but nothing more than that. Both Charley and Joseph are back at school. Sam on the other hand is another story. He has been sick since Friday night. We just got back from the doctor this morning. They finally did the official H1N1 test and prescribed 3 new drugs for Sam. Looks like things took a bad turn last night and now he is being treated for viral and bacterial infections. His doctor is trying to beat out the pneumonia before it starts. He's now on cortico steroids, zithromax, and albuterol treatments. If things aren't better tomorrow morning we have to go back. What else is there to do other than hospitalize him???? GRRRR.... I wanted that shot!

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Oink Oink

Well, if you haven't heard yet, the swine flu has hit our family. After standing in lines, calling doctors offices and health departments, we were unable to get the vaccine for H1N1. This is extremely frustrating especially knowing that we are in the high risk group with asthma. However at the end of the day that frustration doesn't help anyone get any better so we are moving on and focusing on getting healthy and watching the kids really closely.

Joseph was able to get Tamiflu because he has asthma. Finding pharmacies who have it is another story altogether. Unfortunately no one has the children's form so they have to take the adult version and then the pharmacy has to break it down and mix it into a liquid and only compounding pharmacies are able to do that which means those pharmacies are being called on a lot! So its hit and miss who has some in stock. Thankfully after a few phone calls and referals we were able to track some down. (Not to mention its expensive!)

I don't know that its necessarily working. We started it within 30 hours of the first symptoms and he certainly has progressed with symptoms. His coughing is worse and the fever, chills, and body aches are still coming. His asthma is also worse but so far its not to the point of oral steroids, but that can always change at any time.

Sam also has the flu and Ben is heading that direction. Sam is certainly worse than Joseph so maybe the Tamiflu is helping some as Sam is not on it. We are going through Tylenol and Advil like crazy and know we are in this for the long haul.

Last night was tough on Sam and Joseph not being able to participate in Halloween festivities. Charley and Ben went out with Ronny but even they weren't totally into it. We were planning on dinner and fun with our cousins so I think the kids were really bummed not to be with them. Sam was sick with a stomach bug on his birthday earlier this week and Charley's birthday is on Wednesday. I think after everyone is healthy we will have to do something really fun with the kids to make up for all the junk around what normally is a happy time. Or maybe after all the make up work from school is done. Got any ideas on what to do?

We hear many of our friend in OR are getting hit hard as well. Our prayers go out to you and we hope you feel better soon. We love you and miss you very much and the kids ask to go back all the time!

On a happy note, Ronny's dissertation defense is scheduled for Dec. 1. Hooray! That light at the end of the tunnel gets brighter every day!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Welcome to "Froggy"

Nana came to visit us this month. We had a great time with her going school shopping, celebrating Ronny's birthday, and visiting BYU. While at BYU we went bowling and had lunch at the Cougar Eat. After standing in line to get everyone their picks and visiting the bathroom, the fire alarms went off. We waited a few minutes to see if they would go off but we were all kicked out while the fire department figured things out. So we ended up eating outside. The kids were great sports and after we were let back in we headed to the bookstore.

We also visited Costco while Nana was here. (Really, what's a Nana trip without a trip to Costco?) We found great fruit, a few treats, and of course Webkins! Nana treated each child to a new friend. Charley and Joseph immediately showed Nana how to register their new pets online and how she could play with them when she is home. Ben really wasn't so interested in the online stuff but he sure loves his new friend. "Froggy" as he calls him now goes with us everywhere. When I say everywhere I really do mean that! He has to sit at the dinner table, scripture time, everywhere we go he comes along, and of course when Ben goes to sleep. Ben wakes up at night and if he doesn't see Froggy immediately he calls us in to find him. The first night he came home Ben told us he needed a lily pad to sleep on. We gave him a green washcloth and called it good. Nana however went home and made "Froggy" a lily pad. He now sleeps in this next to Ben everynight! He also says prayers with us at night. What a nut!

Sam Turns 6!

Sam turned 6 years old yesterday. I can't believe he is getting so big! He requested a Pokemon cake for his birthday. Mom had to order the pan off Ebay to take care of his request. Thankfully it came in time. With it being an even birthday we had a family party. We are happy to have lots of family around for events like this!

Unfortunately shortly after everyone left Sam came down with a stomach bug. The poor guy threw up every twenty minutes all night long. Not a fun way to spend your birthday! It did however earn him a day off of school to enjoy his new presents.

Sam's Unusual Pet

Sam's lass was given the assignment to build an unusual pet out of stuff around the house. I put Ronny in charge of this as I had just completed two other school projects with the other two. Here is what they came up with. Sam calls him "Toon" and he is a moose with 6 legs and soccer ball eyes. He is made out of things from our recycle bin.

His class invited all the parents in for an "unusual pet show" for the kids to show off there projects. A few of the parents asked if they could take a picture of the moose. I thought that was hilarious! The two of them had lots of fun and the end result was wonderful! I may put Ronny in charge of a few more of these projects in the future.


Ronny went to the ICAPS conference in Greece in September. He presented a paper on some of his research in Solitaire. His paper was awarded the best student paper award and he has since been asked to expand his research and submit it to the Artificial Intelligence Journal. (This is one of the big dogs in Computer Science). He has since expanded his research for his dissertation for his Phd so that work will be submitted to the journal. This is a really big thing in his field so we are very excited that his work has culminated into such success. He has since turned in his first draft of his dissertation which is another big hurdle, only a few more to go.

He has since started his job here in Utah and is enjoying it. They seem very happy with his work thus far as well. The company has just moved offices so his commute just got a little longer. However its still only about 20 minutes or less so things are good.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Called To Serve

My sister Michelle received her mission call today. We all headed to my mother's house for the great announcement. Michelle has been called to serve in the Malagda, Spain Mission and will report in February to the MTC. Congratulations Michelle!!!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Finally Coming Home

Many of you know about our close friendship with members of the Wilberger family and have heard of the news that Brooke's remains have been found. This is a bitter-sweet moment for us and without a doubt for her family. Countless prayers have been made asking for this day to come and we are thrilled that Brooke is finally coming home. Our thoughts and prayers are with this wonderful family who has truly inspired us. As I am sure the hosts in heaven shouted before us we join in chorus, Welcome home Brooke!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

All Grown Up

As you can see by the photo Charley has started to mow the lawn. Can you believe it????? Am I old enough to have a child who mows the lawn? She is growing up way to fast!

When you grow up in a house full of girls you get to learn how to do all the outside chores, so I felt it was one of those things my daughter needed to learn too. Ronny was a great teacher and Charley did a great job! Thank you Jennifer for lending us your mower for the fall!

Joseph is in line as well but first we need to figure out how to take care of that without setting him into an asthma attack. (He's allergic to grass.) The days of yard work have finally begun for us and we are soooo excited!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

"The Genius" or so they say....

Yesterday my brother-in-law called with a funny story about Ronny. He, (my bro-in-law), was at a board of directors meeting on Friday with the big dogs from the investment company that has invested in both the company that he works for and the company that Ronny will be working for. There he mentioned to someone that his brother-in-law was getting ready to start work. That guy then says, "Is he that genius coming in from the Northwest?". He laughed and said it was.

Later that day we went to that particular brother-in-law's company party with the family. A guy with whom he works with walked up to the table to be introduced to all of us. He then asks Ronny, "Are you the genius I've heard about?" Apparently he was also at the board of directors meeting. Ronny of course is doing everything he can to play this down but the rest of us are having a good time with it!

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Answered Prayers

The last few weeks have been somewhat trying for me. Moving into a new home, leaving long-time friends behind, running the house with our little ones without Dad, and so on. One of those trials has been wondering if we made the right decision with the house we chose to rent and the ward we are attending. I have been praying for many things, but one that I have prayed for recently was to know we are where we need to be and the peace that understanding brings. Many of you also know about the struggles we have had with Sam and attending church, and the many prayers and fasting our family and extended family have prayed in his behalf over the last 3 years. Many times I have been frustrated with the Lord's time frame and wanted more guidance on this particular issue. Once again I am amazed at the Lord's mercy and patience with us, me in-particular.

Yesterday we loaded the kids in the car and headed to my sister's house to watch the BYU-Oklahoma game. Sam quietly called from the back seat and asked if it was Sunday the next day. I immediately cringed and thought here we go again. I answered him that it was and that we had early church and needed to get going early. He immediately called out, "I love church and I love Primary!" I was completely stunned! A tear came to my eyes as I said a quiet prayer of gratitude for the two prayers the Lord had answered yesterday. I know we are where we need to be!

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

"I'm so glad when Daddy comes home!"

This is the song we are singing today! We are so happy Ronny is coming home today, we have missed him! Ronny has been working in OR for the last month while we have been in UT. We are counting down the hours, T-minus 10 and counting....

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Ronny's Paper Wins

So because Ronny rarely posts on here and because I'm so proud of all his hard work this last year, I thought I would pass on his good news. Ronny's paper that he submitted to the ICAPS Conference in Greece was awarded the best student paper of the conference. He was also informed that he has been scheduled for a plenary session. (This means that instead of presenting in a combined session with other authors he will be presenting to the entire conference.) NO pressure, ha ha. The is a great honor and a welcome blessing after 7 years of hard work. Congratulations Ronny!

Sunday, August 09, 2009

We're Here

So we made it to South Jordan. I would say in one piece but some of our furniture wasn't in one piece. A few actually. Nothing that we were totally attached to so that's good. Apparently the EQ thought the blankets I put in the truck were for something other than putting around furniture? Oh well. Thanks to all those who showed up to help with the loading and the cleaning! I miss you all already!

The kids traveled well so that made our very long trip not so long after all. We made it to Burley the first day and were in So. Jordan by noon the next. We had great help from family and long time friends who are in the area. We are SO grateful to all of them!

Now the hard part begins (although its pretty much all been hard since we started this adventure!). Ronny flew back to OR today so the kids and I are teaming up to unpack and find places for everything. You never know how little you have until you look around and see all this empty space. Sam and Ben were so funny last night as they were talking back and forth in bed. Ben announced their beds were just too far away and that he would "fix" it in the morning. We just aren't used to so much space! I would post some pictures but at this moment I don't have a clue where the camera is.

The kids all enjoyed chruch this morning and asked if they could go back tomorrow. (Music to my ears!) Hopefully they all will find good friends. Tonight we have a family party for Joseph's birthday and tomorrow the "To DO" list from (well you know where) comes into play. Registering the kids for school is at the top of the list. Which reminds me, I need to track down that paper work.

Well off to work I go........

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Utah House Photos

We've signed a lease this morning so we are committed for the next twelve months. We are moving to Daybreak in South Jordan. We found a great place to live across the street from a park and two blocks from the elementary school. We went to the school and got the registration paperwork to fill out to register the kids. I can't believe this is happening so fast. Here are some photos of the place we are renting. Be prepared, there are several.....

Kitchen, lots of space and we love the island!
(We need to buy a refrigerator and have it delivered before we get there.)

Stairs leading to upstairs.

View of the park from our front porch.

Front entry way and master bedroom off to the side.

Side yard and path leading to the garage. The red bark is going to be replaced with sod and a tree. (One of the down sides to this house is that the garage is not attached but something we can live with for now.)

Bathroom in the basement. (There is another one of these upstairs, I spared you pictures of both.)

Bonus Room/Family Room/TV room in basement (Joseph would call this the I can throw a ball in the house room!)

One of the bedrooms. There are 4 more just like it. (No that does not count the Master Bedroom, and yes there really are 6 bedrooms, and yes I know that's crazy!)

Loft area at the top of the stairs. We plan to make this into a reading/homework area for the kids.

Laundry Room (Just off a hallway from the kitchen)

Another hallway off the kitchen area with a half bath, coat closet and the door to the garage and side yard.

Counter in the Master Bath. The walk in closet is off to the left.

More Master Bath. The door shown is a linen closet.

Front Living Room and fireplace.

In total there are 6 bedrooms and 3 1/2 bathrooms and a total of 3500 square feet. We know this is an absolutely massive house that we will never begin to fill. We considered a smaller home at slightly less rent a month but the perks of this one out weighed the cost for us. Its close to the school, it has a park across the street, and the HOA comes included in the rent. The HOA on this one included both cable and internet so by the time we added that in the rent really wasn't that much difference on the two places. And those of you who are not familiar with this community let me tell what else the HOA covers. 2-3 pools, a lake complete with canoes, kayaks, and sail boats free to residents, snow removal (very important to us!), several parks, sand volleyball courts, basketball courts, tennis courts, community center, fitness center, a police substation, and plans to build another community pool right next to the elementary school and tons of kids. We love the place already!

So now that you know we have lots of room, we would love visitors! We have plenty of room, so come on by. I will send out our new contact info as soon as I set everything up over email. So if you want it and you aren't sure I have your email address be sure to include it in the comments section.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Moving Announcement

UTAH here we come!

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Crazy 80's Prom

One of our friends here turned the big 30 a few days ago. She is a big fan of 80's music and dancing. Whenever the ladies go out we can always count on her shaking her hips to the music! Well for her birthday one of the ladies decided to throw her a surprise birthday party straight from an 80's prom! It was great! We decorated our community center to look like a prom complete with a photo-op corner and refreshments. We had sparkle lights and gold stars hanging down from the ceiling that we cut out and spray painted gold. We borrowed/made some clothes (some of the woman are way too creative for me!) and gathered together to do our hair and make-up to fit the mood before going out to dinner. All our kids looked at us like we were crazy of course.

While we were out the men put on the final touches and got into costume as well. The birthday girl's husband was awaiting our arrival outside the center holding a boom box over his head (anyone care to name that movie?????). I made a cake to look like the boom box to seal the deal. We even got Ronny to show us a few moves from his high school days. Everyone was a good sport and we had lots of fun.

End of the Year Plays

Charley and Joseph's class both put on end of the year plays this year. Charley's class wrote, directed, and made costumes for an adaptation of the book "The Sun the Moon and the Coyote". Charley was cast as Spring and played a drum during the play. Both kids made their own hats/masks in art class.

Joseph's class put on "EIEI Oops" Joseph played Curly the pig and told pig jokes. He was hilarious! Even funnier was one of the girls who played the wife of Farmer in the Dell. She really got into her part!

End of Season Photos

I am trying to catch up on my blog posting so all these events have been in the last few months.

This year in baseball Charley was awarded the "Slugger Award". Joseph also received the "Slugger Award" for his team and Sam received the "Best Defense Award". Sam received this award because no matter where the ball was hit, he was determined to catch it and throw it to 1st base. It was a great season!

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

We Have A Job!!!!

We are officially in panic mode which is why we haven't posted in a while and we have lots of things to add but until we have more time this is what you get! Ronny just received his second job offer this morning for a company in Utah. We have already had an offer for a post-doc in Lisbon, Portugal. We are awaiting one more that hopefully will come in the next two weeks so until then.....

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Sunday Surprises!

So knowing our family, would a Sunday really be complete out our house without a minor emergency? Apparently our children don't think so.

Tonight we sent Ronny off to Stake Priesthood meeting and the kids and I made a deal. If they would clean up the family room we could watch a Sunday movie and pop popcorn until Dad came home. I started them cleaning and headed upstairs to call a friend about something that happened in nursery today. It wasn't too long before I heard yells and tears downstairs. I tried to ignore it in hopes the kids would work it out themselves until I heard the magic words, "Mom Charley's bleeding and there's blood everywhere!" That'll get you moving. I got off the phone headed downstairs to see Charley spitting blood up blood, so I ushered her to the sink and tried to get the story from the boys. What I got was, "I don't want to tell you mom because you'll get mad at me", from Joseph. After seeing the look I gave him he decided fessing up was the better option.

It turns out Charley was spraying Joseph with the water bottle, Joseph got mad, threw a soccer ball at her face and the result was one permanent tooth broken in Charley's mouth. I called my neighbor back to come and get the boys and we headed out to find Dad and decide if we should go to the emergency room or call the on call dentist. There was so much blood at that time I couldn't tell how bad the damage was and wasn't sure if her gums were bleeding. By the time we got to the church the bleeding had stopped, we found Ronny, and could tell it was one broken tooth but the root was exposed. We headed back home, Ronny called Uncle Aaron and I called the dentist. We also were able to find the broken tooth on the floor and quickly got it in some salt water.

We find out tomorrow if the tooth can be saved and wether or not she has to have a root canal. Joseph and Charley hopefully learned a lesson tonight all be it an expensive one. Lets just say they won't be doing anything other than extra chores for a few days!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Mother's Day Blessings

So as you all know yesterday was Mother's Day. It started off like most, breakfast in bed made by the kids and Dad. (Sam woke up too late to help and insisted I eat again so he could help make breakfast, too cute!) Then the craziness began. Joseph started to complain his ear hurt so we pulled out the otoscope (sp?) to check things out. One ear was cloudy and the other was bulging and raging red. We gave him some tylenol and a warm compress as we started to get the others ready for church. After Ronny left with the kids Joseph settled down and watched a movie. 15 minutes later Ronny was back from church with Sam who had a major allergy attack after walking into Scrament meeting (probably due to the flowers). After returning he was able to catch the last minute of the children singing to their Mother's. Charley was positioned in front of the microphone and it sounded like a Charley solo with the rest of the children as back up singers. (I wish I was there to see that!)

Ronny returned from church at noon, we called a neighbor in for a blessing for Joseph, and then he and I headed to the Urgent Care as his ear now looked like it was on the verge of rupturing. After two hours of waiting (it was really busy!) we finally saw the doctor, she was able to numb his ear with benzocaine and write us a couple prescriptions. She also told us Joseph should now be on Zyrtec until July as his allergies were probably the culprit for the massive double ear infection he was now suffering (2 in a month!). Poor guy. After we filled the prescriptions we went home to crash and make dinner. Ronny had cleaned the kitchen and made me my favorite chocolate oatmeal cookies. Yum!

During those quiet minutes at Urgent Care comforting my son I realized how truly blessed I was. Here was my son who the Lord has blessed me with wanting to sit in my lap and be comforted, no one else, just me Mom. When we came home he wanted to snuggle up next to me and take a nap. What a treat! When Sam had come home from church he immediatley sought me out and wanted comfort as well. Two of my boys wanted their Mother's love. Through out the day Charley and Ben would wander in for a chat and a quick hug. What could be better than that on Mother's Day? So yes, it was a very long day filled with lots of crying and discomfort but I wouldn't have traded a second of it, knowing your kids love you that's the best gift anyone could give a Mother on such a day!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

New Church Duds

Yesterday we took the kids to see the new movie Monsters vs. Aliens (I about had a heart attack when they told us it was $9.75 each for the matinee price!!!). The kids loved it, I would have loved to save the extra 3-D fee and watched it on video and seen something else. We then took the kids to Kohl's to do some shopping. We once again realized why we never take all 4 kids to the store at once! The boys picked out their own Easter clothes this year, they both requested a tie. Here's a picture of them with their new duds. (On a side note, Denise actually tied their ties this morning, not bad for someone who's never it done it before and who didn't grow up with brothers!)

Sam's Shiner

(Unfortunately the flash drowned out how purple his eye really was.)

Sam had a rough week last week. Really we all did. Last week was our spring break (way too early in the spring if you ask me!). It didn't start off so great and didn't end so great either. Last Sunday Joseph, Charley, and Ronny stayed home from church due to a pretty icky cold. It sent Joseph to the emergency room later that day. He was diagnosed with croup, upper respiratory infection, and double ear infection. With Joseph's asthma it made everything worse and so we came home after a frustrating trip to the E.R. with 2 more prescriptions to add to what he is already taking and the instructions to stay indoors for the next 5 days. (Can we say cabin fever!!!!) We wanted to visit some friends in Bend, so much for that.

That same day Sam walked into the door knob of the bathroom door and got a nice shiner! The next day he was walking behind me and my watch caught him in the same eye. Poor kid! By the end of the week Ben had the same cold and Ronny is still trying to recover from the same one that we started with. We need a vacation from our vacation!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


Another experience we have while living in the rainy part of the country! Mudwarts, need we say more?

Big Mac

Do you remember having your first Big Mac from McDonald's? I do, I was 9 years old and I was with my Dad and I was soooo excited to eat a big person's hamburger. Ronny says he remembers the first time he had one too. I asked a few other people and they remember there's as well. I think the was some right of passage, at least for my generation. Well last night we went to McDonald's for dinner. (Let's just say it was a stressful day!) Both Charley and Joseph asked if they could have a "big" hamburger this time. Apparently they are now past the happy meal stage (thank goodness for that!). Big Mac's were on sale so we agreed. We told them both to remember how old they were when they had their first Big Mac. Someday they will be a part of buying their kids their first Big Mac too. If you remember your first time, let us know.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Happy Birthday Benjamin!

Ben turned 3 yesterday! Can you believe it?? Where did that time go? As many of you know Ben is obsessed with letters. For Christmas Santa brought Ben a small magna doodle which turned out to be a big hit. So much so he treats it like many young children treat a blanket. He takes it everywhere and of course it has a place next to him on his pillow at night. He calls it his "letter pip" which we assume is because all he writes on it is letters. When we asked him what kind of cake he wanted for his birthday he first said he wanted a letter cake but quickly decided that he
wanted a "letter pip" cake.

The two of us with the help of his brothers worked on his cake all day yesterday. Due to a distraction, mom forgot to put the required oil in the first cake so we had to start all over. We had lots of fun making this, too much as we ran out of time and my friend had to come over to help me get it finished in time. We had dinner over at a friend's house last night so we were under a deadline which is why its not as "clean" as I would have liked. Ben of course couldn't wait to get his hands on it.

When it was time he dug into it like a champ. As did the rest of the kids. Between the two families there were 8 kids together last night. We had so much fun which is what matters on a birthday right? We love you Ben and are so happy you are part of our family!