Monthly Archives: October 2007

Heiser Farms

A couple weeks back we made our annual trip to the pumpkin patch.  We love Heiser farms because they don’t charge for most of their activities – and the ones they do charge for are really inexpensive.  There are animals, a giant slide, a hay tunnel, mini and large tractors to ride and sit on, a hay maze, a corn maze, pumpkins galore, and you can even sit in the hayloft and watch the Peanuts Halloween cartoon.

We started off at the photo board cut-outs…

Ma and Pa Kettle:

Dot and Liz @ Heiser Farms

Cheesey Jacob Face:

Jacob Cheesey Face @ Heiser Farms

Emily looking oh so adorable:

Emmy @ Heiser Farms

Hey Dad, I know you’re in there!

Dad @ Heiser Farms

As soon as Jacob spotted the little tractors he was gone like a streak of lightning…

Little Tractor Boy

Once the big tractors were spotted the little ones were forgotten…

I know this lever here has to do something…

Jacob and Tractor

Elizabeth is on a mission – she just doesn’t realize that someone else is on a mission to usurp the tractor back into his power. Mua ha ha ha ha ha!

Liz and Tractor

If I just had longer legs I could reach the pedals down there….

Em and Tractor


Dot and Tractor

We headed to the hayride after that which takes us to the pumpkin patch and the corn maze. We don’t actually buy our pumpkins there, but we do have a contest to see what is the biggest pumpkin each kid can pick up.

The fam on a hayride

Go Emmy, Go!

Emmy in the Pumpkin patch

Heave Dot, Heave!

Dot in the Pumpkin Patch

I think I saw it lift a millimeter off the ground Liz.

Liz in the Pumpkin patch

I can, I can!

Jacob in the Pumpkin patch

Well maybe not, I’ll just kiss it instead.

It's too heavy - I'll just kiss it instead

After we terrorized the pumpkins in the patch we headed into the corn maze…

Headed into the Corn Maze

Hey, where’d everyone go? This isn’t Signs is it?

Corn Maze

Eeeek!!! Aliens! So, that’s where all the crop circles come from.

Paul and kids in Corn maze

And that wraps up our trip to the pumpkin patch. Tomorrow’s installment will be the carving of the pumpkins. If you are wishing to see more pictures, (who can resist looking at more pics of these adorable kids) I have more posted on flickr. If you can’t see them it is because you need an invite, so let me know and I shall invite you.


Filed under Dot, Em, Family, Jacob, Lizy, Nature, Photography

Idaho Weekend

The post I had planned to do, about our trip to the pumpkin patch a while ago, has been temporarily bumped until tomorrow to make way for a post about our really cool weekend.  We headed to Idaho Friday for the Rick’s College (BYU-Idaho) Symphony Orchestra reunion.

 After a long drive of 12 hours, during which we told the kids the story of how Mom and Dad met,  we finally landed at our friend’s house in Rigby, just a few miles away from the University.  The kids were wired to the hilt after sitting in a car all day so we didn’t hit the sack until midnight or so, but had fun visiting with our good friends we hadn’t seen in three years.

Saturday morning the fun started.  While Paul and I got ready, the teen-age daughter of our friend did all the girls’ hair and painted their nails. Rides on the four-wheelers were next on the list as all the kids bounced around and had a grand time. It was quite the picture with their hair looking all sweet, girly, and perfect, to see them racing along on four-wheelers.  I just wish I had the camera up to catch Dot’s face at the moment she thought she was going to run me down – it was classic. 

Jacob is Rarin' to Go

Family Fun

Eek! Elizabeth is driving!

Jacob's turn to drive (with Dad's help, or course)

Wild woman Dot at the Wheel.

Then we headed into Rexburg. We drove around looking at the changes in the town and pointing out all the places we mentioned in our story.  We stopped at Smith Park for some lunch – Paul and I had been to the park numerous times way back when and the kids had fun playing and listening to Mom and Dad reminisce.

Emily and Daddy thrown in the Clink
(Paul and I have a very similar photo from back in the day…)

Smith Park

Can I please have some more?

We wound up on campus shortly after.  We wandered around the music building and barged in (with permission) on a Jazz band (small group) rehearsal.  Jacob stared fascinated at the drummer the whole time. We took a tour seeing all the new buildings and changes that have been made.  I used to live out in the boonies, but the campus has grown so much that my old apartments were right across from many of the buildings.  It was neat to see how much it had grown in just 11 short years and for the kids too see our favorite spots to hang out. After the tour we waited in line to recieve our tickets for the Halloween concert and changed the kids into their costumes.

The Halloween concert is a long standing Rick’s/ BYU-Idaho tradition.  I was in orchestra for one semester, my first, before my schedule began to get in the way and I switched to band only.  During that semester I got to participate in the Halloween concert. The conductor dresses up as the count, our band director and associate orchestra conductor, is Igor.  The two banter back and forth and really ham up the show.  We sat with great anticipation in the back row of the auditorium.  The lights dim and Igor limps out on the stage directing his helpers to place a coffin in front of the conductor’s stand. He chooses some poor unsuspecting individual to come out of audience and instructs them to push the button on the box – with much humor and anticipation. The button is pushed and every thing goes black except for the wild flashing of the strobe light. We see the coffin open and from it raises The Count and begins to conduct the orchestra in the traditional opening number: “In the Hall of the Mountain King” by Edvard Grieg. The children gasp in awe as orchestra members begin to dance across the stage and taking their places. The music builds and builds as the orchestra grows. Finally everyone is in place and it turns into a wild frenzy as dancers leap and flip across the stage, the strobe lights flashing madly. The song ends and the kids whisper excitedly (I want to see that again).

Then the concert takes off with amazing music, hilarious performances and side shows. And, as it was a reunion concert, there were many video flashbacks to past concerts that had us all laughing, cheering, and remembering days long past. It was definitely a memorable experience for us and the kids. Elizabeth asked me urgently many times, “This isn’t the last Halloween concert is it?” When she found out that the tradition would continue she sighed in relief, “Oh good.”  It was exciting to know that she hoped to see it again someday and maybe even play in it.  It also reminded me that I have a video tape of the concert I played in and I promised the kids we would watch it this week – I have a feeling it is about to become a Halloween tradition.

After the concert we met up with old friends and chatted and returned the children to our friends who were kind enough to babysit for us. Then we headed back to the University for the reunion banquet.  There we met up once again with Paul’s old friends Dan and Darren that extended far beyond college years into childhood.  We were able to sit and hang out with Laural and Becky.  It was awesome to see you guys! 🙂 and others too! 🙂  We were able to meet up with our conductor – mainly for the symphonic band and visit with him as well.  It was a fun evening of re-acquaintances and memories.

A small group of us…
Orchestra Reunion

And then we found Brother Neilson and a few others (and spouses)
Reunion 2

After the dinner Becky and Ed offered to take us up in the helicopter they flew here. We have always wanted to experience fly in a helicopter, but have never had the opportunity. Thanks you guys! It was definitely a highlight of the trip. 🙂 It was amazing to us how smooth it was and the view over Rexburg and the campus at night was simply amazing. We tried to take a few pictures, but the vibrations were bad enough that it made taking a clear photo difficult, especially at night. We did get a couple of amazing pictures of the Temple though.

Helicopter Ride!

Arial View of Rexburg at NIght

Arial View of Rexburg Temple

Then we returned home and spent the remainder of the evening chatting and playing until we turned in. Sunday we were up early and heading home. The trip home passed rather uneventfully, except for the one time the van overheated. We discovered that the fan must have gone bad. So we sat at a rest area for an hour or so until the van cooled down and took off again. As long as we kept moving and didn’t leave the van idling we were fine.

The kids were excited to see their home again, especially Jacob and while it is always fun to go on exciting trips, it is always wonderful to return home.

It was a memorable and fun-filled trip for all of us, and so good to see some of you! 🙂


Filed under Dot, Em, Family, Jacob, Lizy, Music, Photography

End of the Sewing Marathon

YIPPEEE!!!! I have finished my sewing marathon.  I put the final touches on Jacob’s costume tonight, took a nice hot shower, and collapsed into my chair to veg – or just to write a post on my blog and show off the kids costumes.  😀

First we have Elizabeth as Sleeping Beauty:

Sleeping Beauty 1

Sleepeing Beauty 2

Dorothy as Belle: (I have to brag just a bit, because I have never done anything like this before, I even made the little gold ribbon rosettes on her dress)

Belle 1

Belle 2

Emily as Tinker Bell:

Tinker Bell 1

Tinker Bell 2

And finally, Jacob as the Frog Prince: ( I didn’t have a pattern for this one and I am afraid he looks more like some funky creature with a crown on his head, but I had fun with it anyway)

Frog Prince


Filed under Children, Dot, Em, Hobby, Jacob, Lizy

Pregnancy Ramble

I’ve officially hit waddle stage, crazy sciatic nerve stage, and oh my aching back stage.  The benefit to expecting a baby in January is that you are pregnant during the busiest time of year and don’t exactly notice just how pregnant you are getting.  The draw to this is that once you do realize it you have overdone it and need to use your husband for a cane just to get back into the bedroom.  Not to mention the fact you don’t have the energy you need to make through the holidays.  You know, I figured it out that after baby number 5 is born I will have spent 3 years and 4 months pregnant in my life – no wonder I can’t remember anything this time around, I’ve lost nearly 3 years and 4 months worth of brain cells! I’m doomed….. 😉  heh.

I never realized that hours bending of a sewing machine could cause such flare-up in sciatic nerves and aching backs, but the other night I could hardly walk.  Paul, the dear man that he is, promptly searched through the house and found me one of the canes hidden around – (passed down from grandma and used on various occasions as shepherd staves, etc.)  Uhhh….thanks. 🙂

Yesterday was a big day, I ran errands, waddled a half a mile or so (which is usually a breeze for me, but wasn’t – my back was complaining half way into my waddle), had lunch, did some sewing, took Em and Jacob in for flu shots (they have this really cool flu mist now that can be sniffed up the nose and they do it ages 2+ – used to only be 5+ until this year – so the flu shots were pleasant and painless – no screaming and crying kids.  WOOHOO!), ran some more errands, sewed some more.  Then, while I was sewing and the kids were playing outside – the first sunny day in weeks, there was this strange popping and crackling sound.  I looked frantically around trying to see where it was coming from.  I looked up and saw smoke pouring out of a light fixture in the ceiling.

With a gasp I dashed to the wall and shut the light off.  Then I did what every self respecting pregnant lady would do and called my husband.  The whole house smelled like burnt wires, and I was worried that there could be a loose wire somewhere starting a fire where I couldn’t see it.  He had me patting down the ceiling to see if it was hot, looking out side for smoke, and pulling open the attic entrance to look for smoke, etc.  I called our electrician friend – and had to leave him a message.  Then I ran a couple doors down the street to our fire-fighter neighbor, but he wasn’t home.  Then I shut off the breaker in case there were still live wires that might be connecting and causing problems somewhere I couldn’t see.  Paul, dear man, got off early and came home to check out the problem.  It was a lightbulb gone bad and funky.  Nothing else, and thankfully, no fire. 

After all that excitement I continued to sew, then we all went to the store (the cheap place to  get pumpkins, though we always take the kids to the pumpkin patch, we get the pumpkins at the cheap place) and picked out six pumpkins.  By the time we were done and home and kids were in bed it was 8:30 and the kitchen was out of control (for some reason when mom is sewing like mad, nothing else in the house gets done). So, of course, I did the dishes, hobbling about the kitchen with my back in fits of pain, and my tummy aching from being an interior punching bag and stretched beyond any possible limits.  Paul growled at me, but I needed to get it done, and he needed to study, so I let him growl and completed the task at hand.  Of course you have that emotional pregnancy moment of “I hurt and I’m in pain, and you are so sweet and trying to be nice, but you can’t and I have to do it anyway…Waaaaaaaaa” – I felt like an I Love Lucy re-run. (Of course after that I collapsed in my chair and vegged the rest of the evening.  I attempted, once, to begin sewing again – I laughed at myself and went to bed.)

All is well once again this morning and I am ready to put in a day of sewing (I’m nearly done!) and attend a prenatal.  But I am sure, by the end of the day I’ll be hobbling about the place as yesterday.  But then, that is the nice thing about pregnancy, at least I know that it will all go away once the pregnancy is over (including my sanity – heh – that’s been gone for at least 8 years now 😉 ). Now, old age… that will be an entirely different ball game. 🙂


Filed under Pregnancy

Z is for Zipper

Encyclopedia of Me Meme

 Which is all that is left of one costume.  Well, the zipper and the hem.  Two of my least favorite things to do, though while I get better at zippers I seem to fail in improving my hemming.  So, one nearly down and three more to go.  I seem to forget that with four kids to sew costumes for I need to get started EARLY.  So here I am, a week and a half away from Halloween and I still have three costumes to go.  At least they are cut out though.  I spent so much time sewing yesterday that by the time I put stuff away in the evening my psyatic nerve was acting up so bad I had to use Paul as a cane in order to walk to the bedroom.  Sad.  I am hoping to complete at least two more costumes today, as the one I did yesterday was the hardest of the batch. 

Z is for ZZZZzzzzz

Which is what I will be doing once these costumes are finished, before then – not much. 🙂

Lastly, Z is for Zoo

I live in one after all. I decided that if all of my kids were animals this is what they would be: 

Elizabeth would be a horse – gentle, loving, enjoys a good frolic, loves to lay in the sunshine, and when they get mad, boy can they pitch a fit – and pitch you! 🙂

Dorothy would be a cougar – they know how to sneak up on their pray, can be fast when they need to be, but most of the time can lay around in the sun.

Emily would be a dolphin – enjoys playing as much as possible, has a generally cheerful nature.

Jacob would be a monkey – swinging from limb to limb looking for what he can get into next. His curiosity always getting the better of him.

So you see, I live in my own little zoo that keep my life hopping and exciting.

Woohoo!!! I finished!!!


Filed under Meme

Y is for Yakkety Yak Don’t Talk Back

Encyclopedia of Me Meme

 A problem we have been having in spades with a couple of our children lately.  I have been finding myself coming up with  quick little anecdotes such as, “One butt is enough for me thanks, I don’t need all of yours”, “I see you have a but, why don’t you sit on it in time-out”, or “Goats butt, kids behave.”  Every once in a while I will say, “we use bum, behind, or bottom in this house, no butts.” They look at me confused for a second and then continue, “But mom, that’s not what I meant…”   But, but, but….  *sigh* 

I think I have decided to have them start doing push-ups every time they start talking back and arguing.  Commet has gotten so good at it that she could be the queen of debate.  She’ll even start arguing the good things, until she realizes what we said and then the clamps up pretty quick before we change our minds.  Quick kid, that.  If nothing else, I would end up with some pretty tough cookies for kids. 🙂

Y is also for Yippee! Yahoo! and Yay!

Just my of letting you know that even with all the yakkety yakking I am a happy camper and all is well in family land.

Oooh, and lastly Y is for “Yingle Bells”.  

 A really fun, Swedish version of Jingle Bells that my granddad used to sing to us kids as he played his banjo.  For a great recording of it (not my granddad, the song) click on the link and turn up the volume.  It still makes me chuckle and now I play it on the piano as my family gathers around, singing “Yingle Bells” at the top of our lungs.

StinaLisa’s Recording of Yingle Bells

Be sure to sing along, should you have the notion too!

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Filed under Humor, Meme, Memory, Music, Parenting

X is for xylophagous, xylography, and Xanadu

Encyclopedia of Me Meme

Do you know how hard it is to come up with an x word that isn’t X-ray, xylophone, x-box (not that we have one),  etc?

So I did a bit of digging in the dictionary. Since I love words I thought I would find three words that I thought were cool

First off I just want to say that I am glad that we haven’t seen any more problems with xylophagous creatures in quite some time.  We were worried when we saw a bunch of them back in the spring that we could be headed for major problems. However, it appears we have them taken care of.  Yay!

I have seen the technique of xylography before and I think it is really cool. We learned about it in my elementary art class, but I had no idea this was the correct term for it.

Finally Xanadu.  Xanadu was described as being “a place of great beauty, luxury, and contentment” coming from a poem by Samuel Coleridge.  And that got me thinking what is my place of great beuty, luxery, and contentment.

My place of great beauty is a tough one as there are so many gorgeous places and things to see, it depends on my mood. It would definitely be one of nature.  Some days it is the ocean. I could sit for hours watching the beauty of the waves as they roll in with the mist streaming from their backs, or the spray as the crash gloriously upon the rocks.  Sometimes it would be a valley full of wild flowers filling a painter’s pallet with all the colors of nature.  It would be a view from a craggy peak, seeing mountain upon mountain reaching  majestically to the heavens, or hills a-blaze with the firey clolors of fall. Or it could simply be an old barn on a misty fall day.

 My place of great luxery would be a jaccuzi tub full of bubbles, flickering candlelight, and soft music playing.  A moment of quiet and peace without squabbling children where I can just think and be.

My place of contenment are those moments when I am surrounded by my children and family and for that split second all is happy and all is well. There are no worries, no fights, just all of us together surrounded by love and happiness.


Filed under Meme

W is for White Wash

Encyclopedia of Me Meme

I loved Tom Sawyer as a kid, it has been such a long time since I have enjoyed his adventures. One of my favorite stories from Tom Sawyer was the white washing the fence story. 

Even though I enjoyed the story, I did not find white washing to be the funnest thing to do.  Of course, it was a lot better than picking rocks out of a garden that was at least an acre in size.  From time to time it would be time to white wash certain buildings on the farm so they wouldn’t look quite as dingy as before.  If anyone is uncertain about the technique of white washing, it is the same as painting, except the white paint is watered down to stretch further and not go on as thick.  There were times when we loved it though. 

There was a little one room building on the farm down by the barn that had housed geese, I think, at one point.  There were scraps of lumber strewn haphazardly across the rafter beams with rolls of chicken wire on top of them.  The little building wasn’t used for much, from time to time we used it for a club house, or a secret meeting place.  One day I pleaded with my parents to let me clean it and turn it into a play house.

I was delighted when they agreed and set to cleaning away all the goose droppings and scrubbing down the walls.  They even allotted me some paint to white wash the walls with.  There were glass-less windows that I hung some material over and got permission to move the little white wood stove and fridge that my mom had built into to building.  I accrued a small table, a cradle for a baby doll, and some other miscellaneous furniture.  I vaguely remember being allowed to put in an old bench, where the bench part was a little bookcase, with a large back going up.  I think my mom may have painted it cut it into the shape of a cat or something – in the Richard Scary style.  It is hard to remember if such a thing exists, or if I just dreamed it up.  There might have even been some kind of bed in there at one point – the memories fade after time.

Anyway, I loved that little cottage and played there for hours – when I wasn’t busy fighting off the monsters with my brothers, hanging out of tress, jumping into manure piles, or going scampering about the rafters of the corn crib.

So, the word ‘White wash’ carries a few endearing memories for me.  What sparked these memories?  Last weekend we were driving out to Tillamook when I saw this, and it reminded me to an extent of the old days.  Of course I made Paul stop so I could get out and take a photo.  I think it might just become the wall paper on my laptop. 🙂

Old barn

Here is a close-up of the barn, though I think I like the first photo better – something about that mist and the surrounding autumn feel.

Old Barn Close-up

I’d say that barn needed a good whitewash, but it would spoil its charm. 😀


Filed under Farm Stories, Meme, Memory, Photography

V is for Vanish

Encyclopedia of Me Meme

My memory has vanished, gone, never to be seen again.  You can blame it on the pregnancy, but I think it is seeking a tropical island to cruise to.  I’m not saying I forget something from time to time but I can’t hold a single thought in my head for longer than two seconds.  I’ll remember something in the morning that needs to be done, or a child needs to be taken to, and by afternoon I will have completely forgotten.

Why blog about a vanished brain?  Well, perhaps to vent a bit. See, I feel horrible and like I am letting my everyone down, worst of all my children.  For the second time this month I forgot about taking Elizabeth to a church activity that was really important to her.  I feel like a heel.  I keep forgetting about the meetings I have to practice with the three ladies I am accompanying for a musical number at church.  They call to remind me at the time I should have been there, but then I end up keeping them waiting for 10-20 minutes while I try to find my keys, my shoes, shake of the children, and drive to the church to practice. 

I will have a thought that I should stop and visit someone, or take cookies to them. It doesn’t get acted upon because I FORGET. Grrrr.  Emily hasn’t had a play-date for two weeks because I keep forgetting to set one up.  It is so frustrating, and I feel so terrible. It doesn’t matter how many times I write it down – I’ll forget shortly after reading it.  I have turned into one of the characteristics that I despise the most: an unreliable flake.

On the upside, I have at least remembered Liz’s dentist appointment, and the kids picture appointments at Wal-Mart (so much cheaper than school pics – rather than $25 minimum for a dinky package, I get a huge package for $6 – can’t beat that, and they do a decent job too).

 So, with my vanished brain, comes vanished keys, vanished shoes, vanished purse.  Thankfully now vanished kids yet – I haven’t set them down and forgotten where I put them as of yet. heh 🙂  Thank goodness for a sweet husband who helps keep track of my schedule, reminds me of when events are, and can tell me without batting an eye where I last set down whatever it is I am looking for.

I’d like to say that I misplaced my computer for an excuse as to why I have been so neglect in writing – and reading – or that I keep forgetting 😉  but I have been busy, and honestly not in the mood.  Maybe it’s just that I have a hard time thinking of something to write about when what is left of my brain is so busy trying to remember what I have forgotten. 🙂  hee hee. 

Anyway, bring on the vanishing memory and brain jokes – I need a laugh, even if it is at my own expense!  😀


Filed under Meme, Pregnancy

U is for Utter Momness

Encyclopedia of Me Meme

Ok, so U was a tough one to come up with.  That is, until my mother sent me this absolutely hillarious link.  After I managed to control my constant laughter (nearly peed my pants, but being pregnant, that isn’t too dificult).  🙂 Heh, ah the joys of motherhood.    I love being a mom and I love my 41/2 kids – sure I get frustrated sometimes and wonder what sane person (obviously I’m not sane) would have a child, let alone 4 or 5 of them, but then all the good times remind me that I love being who I am and I would choose everytime to have all these gorgeous little creatures.  That being said, I totally feel like the lady in the clip below, I think every mom will be able to relate in some way. So, sit back and enjoy some Utter Momness. 🙂


Filed under Humor, Meme, Parenting