Friday, August 19, 2011

Best Games...

Sammer and I have enjoyed two new activities the last little while. Keep in mind, I am still technically a boy mom :)
The first game involves a bowl of magnetic letters. Sammer picks them up and then says the name of the letter while throwing it at a wall. I sit by the wall, help him occasionally when he forgets the letter name and then toss the letters back to him so it can keep going. He is at about 90% accuracy with the letters and about 60% accuracy with the wall.
The second is even more fun. I sit on a chair about 12 feet from the door. Sam runs out the door. Then he runs back in and I shoot him as he comes through the door with a nerf gun. Sammer stops to laugh for about 10 seconds then he picks up the bullet, brings it to me and runs back out the door and the process begins again. Best game ever...

Must stay awake...

I am waiting to do my visiting teaching but I am about to fall asleep. I need to stay awake so I am here typing. Since this is on my mind from VTing, these are a few of the conversations/thoughts that have been going on in my life. I think I'll end them with a question just like a good VT should answer. I need more things to read so make your answers long...

School is starting. I don't feel any anxiety about school this year. We found out the teachers for the boys and about the programs they would be in a little while ago. Hy has been placed in an integrated classroom. We weren't sure what that meant and didn't get too many answers from the front office (which was the only thing open for the last few weeks). It brought up the whole homeschooling debate again. Our elementary school in Texas was SO bad. I didn't mind pre-K because truthfully Hy spent 1/2 of the time he was there in speech or occupational therapy. I had a lot of confidence in Hy's kindergarten teacher but that was my limit. I knew we were moving probably before the end of kindergarten so we didn't have to stay in that situation but we were ready to pull him out.
We finally got to meet with his teacher. We asked about why Hy was put into the program and she told us that Hy had been picked by the 3rd grade teachers for the program because of his excellent behavior and hard working attitude. They expected this situation to be harder for the teachers so they tried to get as many of the best kids into this class to help the teachers. could I not be happy? Now if I can just try and avoid all the crazy G&T parents from Josh and Math's programs it should be smooth sailing :)
What are the things that are hardest for you about back to school? What are your biggest concerns? (there may be some I haven't thought of yet that I should be worrying about :)

We live in a strange ward, strange in a good way. The dynamics of some Utah wards are so different and yet they can produce amazing results. One of the things that I have appreciated lately is the serious lack of judgement by people in the ward. Our ward basically has one half that is normal middle/upper class and then one half that UPPER/UPPER class and yet I have not really detected any sort of judgement/comparison from anyone. It is sort of amazing. The other thing is, from conversations you can tell that no one in the ward expects to be judged by anyone else. The women speak freely and openly both in RS and in conversations on the street and clearly expect to be understood and supported rather than judged...and that is what happens. There are grumpy, opinionated, crazy, stubborn and very direct women in the ward but still no real judging of each other. Refreshing and infectious...
What do you do in your life to keep from judging others? How to you keep from comparing yourself to others? (probably the harder of the two)

Names. Probably not to interesting to people who live far but it has consumed a lot of my conversations with my local friends...feel free to skip ahead :) So, just for fun and for the locals who have asked...In current order. Beth (Hazelbeth or Rhea Beth), Polly (Pauline Beth), Abigail, Jane, Anna/Annie, Margaret. Names I still love but will never fly with John...Greta, Violet, June, Clara, Mary, Nora. The first two never change. Her name will be Beth (98%) or Polly (2%) with every other name below a 0.9 chance according to the powers that be. I should add that yes, we do have a boy name just in case... :)
What inspired your names...tradition, family, uniqueness, spiritual confirmation (that is ours biggest deciding factor)?

Comments. I thought that I had heard it all after 11 years and having 5 boys. I didn't think there was any "boy" comment left to be said to me. What a fun ride, they were often so unexpected or different from my thinking that they entertained me greatly. I know 99% of them were made with no offense and I never took any because it really is just funny and even I can't believe I ended up with 5 boys so it doesn't surprise me that other people can't believe I ended up 5 boys. I thought that maybe it wouldn't be as much fun now but holy moly...having a girl after 5 boys elicits a whole new level of "creative" comments. Wow...I am glad I am having a girl just the comment entertainment value!
What are some of the funniest or craziest things people have said to you about children, dating, relationships, etc?

What would we do without the Spirit? With Miss Beth and especially with Sammer, the decision to have them were based on overwhelming experiences with the Spirit. The choice went against my better judgement and through the Spirit I was told with directness that my better judgement was not the plan for me :) I've known most of you wonderful souls out there long enough to know that the Spirit works in your lives as well and it leaves me to wonder what we'd be like if we left our most important decisions to our selfish selves? And what would it be like to be void of the peace the Spirit brings to helps us through?
What do you do in your life to keep that feeling of peace? What do you do to keep the Spirit close?

Anything on your mind lately that you just want to share? How have you been doing?

I think I am ready to go...and still awake!!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Different is Good???

I recently talked to the hospital about maternity costs. In areas like this, it always surprises me the regional differences an area has. They gave me the average cost of a 2 day stay and delivery. It is almost half of what the cost in Austin was a few years ago. Then they went on to explain all the different ways you can save money. In fact, the advisor said that many women with no complications are able to have their baby for under $1000 if they don't stay long. Can you imagine? The average is under $5000 (not including anesthesiologist) for a regular birth and when I talked to my insurance they said it would be well under that price because they are contracted much lower. Doesn't that seem low? I know my Colorado baby was well above that even though I only paid $10 in my copay (that was excellent insurance). They don't require a pediatrician to release the baby from the hospital and they let you go when you want to. This I like about Utah. On the other hand, they also won't put fluoride in the water win some, you lose some.

I think long hair is back. At any given time there are always short hair styles and long hair styles that are popular but it seems like one is usually more "stylish" for a time. People who know fashion can disagree with me because I don't really know what I am talking about but it seems like longer hair is back as more popular. I am very thankful that the short years were popular while I was in Texas. It was way to HOT for long hair. I am very thankful long hair is popular while in UT and CO. It is way to COLD for short hair :) The longer/medium hair length comeback is also good timing as my interest in hair has been renewed because I will actually have some one's hair to do soon :)

When the boys came back from Texas they told us about everything including some fun memories seeing Gma Goodwin. As they talked I thought maybe we really should use the name Polly (Pauline) after this amazing woman. It has been our girl backup name for the last 2 babies. Then on Sun we sang some of Eliza R Snow's songs in church and I thought we should name her Eliza Snow Prince (Snow is my maiden name)...wouldn't that be cute. Then I thought we should steal other cultures' ideas and give her even more names like Eliza Rhea Snow, then she'd be Eliza R Snow for real. (Side note...there is no form of Elizabeth that I don't love...Liz, Liza, Eliza and Beth are all fabulous!!) John is not convinced so she'll continue with Beth for now (either Hazelbeth or RheaBeth - after my great gma or my gma) but we are running into a problem with Hazelbeth because everyone is IN LOVE with the name Hazel. We'd planned on calling her Beth but everyone just gushes over Hazel when I tell them Hazelbeth and call her Hazel so that may be what she gets called in the end :)
No worries, I'll try not to be disappointed if she ends up as Hazel. You can't always predict these things. My cousin was just telling me this week that the nickname for their baby "baby No" was unplanned along with my other cousin whose nickname ended up being Jo for Joel. I never thought we'd end up with Dog, Math or Sammer for nicknames and they've been so fun. People really like Math and Sammer. My sister was called Jet, my brother-in-law Goodwin and my niece "B." My sister doesn't even use her real name anymore (except at work), you have to look her up as Jet.

The third trimester has dawned and I can feel it. I expect to be really sick in 2-4 weeks from now based on my current degrading condition. I hope it is 4 weeks because that will only give me about 6-9 weeks really sick at the end but we'll see...maybe I won't get terribly sick again??? That would definitely be a welcome difference.

I am also not ready at all for baby. This is a big difference :) Usually by this time, knowing how I will be feeling, I try and prepare because I won't be able to leave the house soon :) I can tell you this, she won't come home from the hospital naked and she'll be dressed her second day at home but after that I'll have to get up and wash or she'll be naked her third day :) I won't worry too much because I do have boy things I can always pull out if needed. I can also try and pick a few things up when I do leave the house if I have energy!

Football season is about to start and that is exciting!! This year promises to be crazy. My guess is that Gilbert is going to be out we'll have a new QB for the Longhorns. It looks like BYU might actually have a decent defense this year. Is anyone going to the BYU vs. Texas game? I have decided to remain silent about the outcome of this game and try to keep my anxiety low :)

For the first time in my life I am actually hoping to go full term with a baby!! We realized that if I got a few days past my due date then everyone will have their birthday in a different month! It is hard to believe with 8 birthdays you could end up with different month for everyone! Even if you tried to plan it that would be difficult and since I didn't plan it that may not happen but at least it will be something to hold onto if they baby doesn't come early :) Also, if we go with Hazelbeth our names can be written chiastically :)

And the best difference...Autumn. I know it is still a few weeks off but I can't keep my delightful anticipation of it's arrive inside. I can't wait for my first orange leaf!

PS - This is also a long post which is somewhat different for me...