Thursday, April 23, 2009

A Couple of BIG Decisions=DONE

Well, Lonnie and I have made a couple of really big decisions today.  First things first, we are not moving right now.  We found a house that we were really interested in but once we went to see it no thanks!  Also, financially we didn't want to have two home mortgages, especially in today's economy.  So, we have decided that we still want to/need to move into the Peoria School District prior to Mason and Michelle starting kindergarten.  We are thinking that either Spring or Summer next year we will be looking to make our move and hopefully the market will be a little bit better so that we can just break even on our current home.  Time will tell...

The second big decision we made is that we are going to keep Michelle in pre-school for one more year.  We still really don't want her and Mason to be in the same grade, but the thing is even if we put her in a charter school out here in good old Dysart District and she completes kindergarten she would still have to test into 1st grade in Peoria School District.  Also, we found out that over there there is a separate school that the children who receive "resources".  Therefore, they could very well not be at the same school.  It will all work out how it is supposed to!

The craziest thing is that Michelle, Mason, and Saige will all be attending the same pre-school next year.  It's moments like this that we are once again reminded that our family is not "normal", but it is our family and we wouldn't trade it for anything.

California...here we come!!!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

33 days...a couple of milestones...and continuing education

Okay so we only have 33 days left until Kristen comes home from her mission!  I cannot believe it!  I'm excited to see what she is going to be like.  One thing's for sure...I have missed my sister and am SOO  excited to have her home!  This also means that Gage will be starting nursery next month! :)  I am so excited!  I still cannot believe how fast that went!  

As far as the mile stones go...Saige used the potty last night (without screaming)!  We are trying again this morning but so far we've had accidents.  No problem.  We will really focus on this this week and see what happens!  Also, Lonnie has been wanting me to shave Mason's head. Well, last night I did it!  Not like Lonnie's, but buzzed!  He looks so much older now!  It will surely be easier to keep up on! 

Many of you know that I have been really focused on food storage and preparedness lately. A couple of weeks ago I met up with this wonderful gal from our ward who is EXTREMELY knowledgeable!  She helped me determine which wheat is best, which flour is best, and even made my first batch of bread with me!  She rocks and her bread rocks too!  So yes, in this Durham home we are now eating homemade whole wheat bread (no more of that crap from the grocery store)!  I even attempted to can chicken.  Unfortunately, the pressure canner didn't work correctly, but no worries the chicken was still saved and frozen!  We will try again when it goes on sale as I have no more room in my freezer after the 40 pounds of chicken that I bought! I also met up with my good friend who taught me how to make home made strawberry freezer jam.  It is so yummy and was so easy.  I felt so bad that she came over as I probably waisted her time.  So, now I have 7 loaves of bread, 18 jars of homemade jam and some knowledge.  

There is another gal in our ward that sent out an e-mail and recipe on making your own laundry detergent.  It is SOO inexpensive and works!  I am completely sold and bought everything to make it.  I'm just going to use up what I have opened first!  

Along with all of this knowledge and know how you there are a couple of "gadgets" that make things easier.  So, I kind of got what will probably be my Christmas gift.  A Bosch mixer, a wheat mill, a masher (for the strawberry jam), and bread pans galore!

Poor Sagie, I hope she doesn't need to use her closet any time soon as I have moved all of our water into her closet!  It's amazing how much room it took up and I just bought 6 cases more and there will be more coming as we only have about 4-5 months of water on hand.  We will make room for it though, I am determined!

Thank you so much to all of you who have helped me learn!  I know that I have tons to still learn , but I feel like I've made a lot of progress.  It really is so much fun and I feel better knowing that my family and I are a little more prepared!  As I told Lonnie the other day we now have a years supply of three things...peanut butter, ketchup (it's only $1 right now at Bashas), and laundry soap!  We are getting there!  

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

a difficult post

I'm not sure where to even begin with this one...other than to say live each day to the fullest and be grateful for the time that you have with your loved ones.  This evening I received a call that I knew was inevitable, but I was not looking forward to.  My brother's father has been battling cancer for quite some time now and passed on this afternoon/evening.  My heart just aches for my brother and all that he has been through these last couple of years.  I'm certain that he has had so many thoughts and emotions that he has dealt with.  All his father wanted in the end was to be in his home.  I was so impressed with how Chad handled things.  He took off of work to take care of his father during his time of need.  What a humbling experience that must have been to help your parent who had provided so many things for you throughout your life that was no longer able to help themselves.  What an amazing experience for both Chad and Brion.  I know that those of us still in this mortal life will still struggle with this loss but we can all find comfort in knowing that Brion is no longer in pain and is in a much better place.  I am so grateful for the testimony that I have of eternal families and for the trust that I have in my Heavenly Father.  I know without a shadow of a doubt that we will all get to see Brion again. That he IS in a much better place.  That he is no longer in pain.  It always amazes me that no matter ones personal religious beliefs how important the family is to everyone.  I can only recall very few times wherein I ever stepped foot into Brion's home.  It was comforting to me this evening as I was in his home to see so many pictures of his family all around.  From Chad's baby pictures, to Kyan's baby pictures, to Lola's baby pictures, to Chad and Jenni's engagement and wedding pictures, to halloween pictures, and so many more.  Brion truly surrounded himself with those things that he loved...his family.  I pray that Chad and his family and all of those friends of Brion's may be comforted during this difficult time.  I pray that they may find the peace that they may need. I am so grateful for Jenni and for her being strong for Chad during this time.  I cannot imagine that being an easy role.  And Mr. Kyan.  I don't think that he will every truly comprehend how much of a support he was to his daddy!  I love you all so very much and truly are blessed to be a part of your family.  May we continue to rely upon one another's strength as we begin the healing process.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

mr. mason's incident at school

Here is what Mason looked like when he returned home from preschool today.  A little bit different than when he left home!

and the note in his backpack...


The school nurse called this afternoon to "notify" me that an event had taken place.  Really?  I hadn't noticed!  She is really a nice lady but just a typical school nurse.