Saturday, July 31, 2010

This Week's Update: July 25-31

Sunday, July 25: We had a nice relaxing Sunday, just church and FHE. Adam's parents came over for dinner and then we played a couple rounds of dominoes.

Monday, July 26: Stupid me decided to stay up until 1:30 the night before and then wonderful little Aiden woke up at 5:30. That would not be good for me anyway, you add in that I'm very very pregnant and it does not make for a happy momma. But since we all woke up early we were able to go grocery shopping BEFORE swim lessons. So we left the house at 8 went to Dillions, the bread store, unloaded the groceries, swim lessons, went to a meeting for church, went back home to feed Xavier and quick lunch then took him to a friend's house. We didn't get home until 1:30. Aiden refused to nap. Damon luckily was happy watching some cartoons since he hadn't watched any for a couple days. And I spent a long time on the phone with my sister. We were supposed to feed the missionaries that night but the thought of feeding the elders, cleaning my house, preparing a meal just stressed me out. Adam bought them pizza instead. And at 5:30 I curled up and took a little nap while Adam fed the boys leftovers. After my little nap we took the boys swimming and closed the pool down. We also ran into two families from the ward which made for good playmates for the boys and gave me someone to talk to. Aiden crashed into his bed with no fight, a first since he has been in his toddler bed, and slept until after 8 am, another first. Almost forgot...Xavier finally got the guts to go off the diving boards, including the high dive. Now if only Damon would do it.

Tuesday, July 27: Thankfully we didn't have much going on today. Swim lessons in the morning, Adam coming home for lunch, laundry, and piano lessons in the afternoon. Aiden and I picked up our farm share, which made him fall asleep in the car. The boys and I decided to have a light dinner and then head to the pool again. Adam met some friends for golf so he wasn't going to be home until late. The boys and I went to the pool for just over an hour. I love taking them to the pool. It wears them out so much that they go to bed so easily after. Its perfect.

Wednesday, July 28: Is it sad that I can't remember anything we did this day except for swim lessons and going to Jim's? Adam and I also had temple recommend interviews with President Knapp. When we got to the Institute building a little early he was still meeting with the Mission President and a couple other people. I had a nice conversation with the mission president's wife about raising boys. Oh yeah, just remembered, Damon moved up another level in swim lessons.

Thursday, July 29: While the boys were at swim lessons, Aiden and I went to the grandparents' house to take care of Pugsley while they were gone for the weekend. The boys had a good time at swim lessons but Damon was pretty sure his teacher was trying to kill him since she made them practice in the deep end.
That evening our home teacher came over for our monthly visit. We talked about swimming and going to the pool. It came out that Damon kept chickening out of going off the diving boards so we talked about that for a bit. After he left, we got ready to go to the pool. Right before the pool closed, our home teacher showed up to go off the diving boards with the boys. He bargained with Damon that if he would go off the low dive, he would do a flip. So Damon actually did it. He had the biggest grin on his face after. He also proved that his parents were right, we kept telling him if he went once he would love it and want to keep going. Of course that was true. He loves going off the diving boards now. Now we need to try the high dive...maybe before the end of summer.

Friday, July 30: The last day of swim lessons. They do a short lesson then the rest if "free" time. So the boys spent it going off the diving boards. They even did tricks like spinning 180 degrees, 360 degrees and the "Spiderman."
That evening we went to dinner at Early Edition (kids eat for 99 cents!) and an exciting trip to Wal-Mart. Xavier picked out a new pet, a freshwater crab. He hasn't bought it yet but the darn kid has money saved up so its just a matter of time. We had planned on going to a movie that was being shown outside but it started to rain so we bailed on that and went home and watched a movie instead.

Saturday, July 31: The boys woke up bright and early, Adam had already left to go running so we went outside. They played while I worked on a couple projects that needed to be painted. One was painting these boards I'm making for the kitchen. Another was repainting the rocking chair for Aiden's and Grayson's room. I originally planned on painting it white but last minute decided to paint it a light pumpkin color, the same color that is going to be the upstairs bathroom. I also put together some new shelves we got for their room as well. Once we get some missing parts for the crib I think their room will be all ready to go.
A boy from church came over to help Damon make a birdhouse for his cub scout badge stuff. Hopefully the birds or the cub scouts will be too critical. Its a little off but I'm sure some paint and hanging it high into a tree might help.
In the evening we went swimming. There was a family from Damon's baseball team there so the boys had a good time playing with him and his brother.

How to Grow a Happy Child, in 10 Easy Lessons

Several years ago, Adam found this article in a magazine or newspaper or somewhere. We agreed with a lot of the points and have tried to raise the boys in a similar way. It is written by a family psychologist, John Rosemond. He believes in a lot of traditional child-rearing techniques.

Since I found it recently, I thought I would post it. I will say we have adjusted many of the points to best suit our family.

How to grow a happy child, part one:
If you are married, have a more active relationship with one another than you have with your children. Spend more time in the roles of husband and wife than you spend in the roles of mother and father. Nothing causes a child greater insecurity than the sense that his parents' marriage is not the most solid, permanent thing in his life, and vice versa.

How to grow a happy child, part two:
If you are single, do not be married to your children. Have an active life outside of your role as mother or father. Be an interesting person to your kids. The well-being of a single parent is essential to the well-being of his or her children.

How to grow a happy child, part three:
Expect your children to obey. Expect this calmly, as if you take it for granted. Who is the happier employee: the one who frequently tries to get away with breaking the rules, or the one who obeys the rules? Substitute child for employee and the answer is the same. Disobedient children are not happy campers. Said another way, the most obedient children are also the happiest children.

How to grow a happy child, part four:
Expect your children to be responsible citizens of your family. From the time they are 3 years old, assign them to chores around the home, chores that mean something. Teach your 3-year-old to wash floors. Teach your 4-year-old to vacuum. Teach your 5-year-old to clean the bathroom. Good citizenship is a matter of making contributions. Too many of today's kids have no meaningful roles in their families. They're not contributing. They're just there, consuming, and the more they consume, the more they demand. Demanding people are not happy people.

How to grow a happy child, part five:
Teach your children that happiness is not a matter of how much you have, but a matter of how much you do with what you have. Don't buy them a lot of things that will end up doing nothing but cluttering up their lives.

How to grow a happy child, part six:
Teach your kids that two of the most fun things to do are reading and travel, both of which involve the accumulation of memories as opposed to things. Begin reading to your children early, and read to them often. Every time you think of buying your children toys, consider taking them fishing or camping or to a museum. Spend time, not money.

How to grow a happy child, part seven:
Let television and video games into your children's lives very little, if at all. The happiest children are not found staring at television sets or frantically manipulating video game consoles. They are found in parks, on playgrounds, and in other three dimensional places.

How to grow a happy child, part eight:
Help your children develop hobbies. Few things exercise imagination and creativity as well as a hobby. By the way, a hobby is not an after-school sport. A hobby is something a child can do by himself, eventually without adult supervision.

How to grow a happy child, part nine:
Teach your children good manners. Good manners are a demonstration of attentiveness to and respect for others, and the happiest people are those who pay more attention to others than they want others to pay to them.

How to grow a happy child, part ten:
Hold your children to high standards. You show respect for a child by expecting of the child. Expect the best manners. Expect obedience. Expect your child to pitch in around the house without being asked. Hold your child accountable for his or her behavior. Make no excuses, accept no excuses. The happiest campers always do their best.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Aiden and Shoes

Aiden has quite the obsession with shoes. It doesn't matter who's they are but if he finds a pair and can shove his feet in them, he is wearing them all over the house.
(I don't know where he gets it!) One of his favorite things is to get into our closet and try on Adam's or my shoes.

Sunday as I was getting his socks and shoes on him for church, I could tell he was eying my fancy flowery heels. I broke the news that they are not his, there is no time to wear try them on, and you can't wear socks with heels and we already have his socks on.

As soon as we get to church and sit down. Aiden sits on the floor beside my legs and takes my shoes off. He then takes off his shoes and socks and puts on my heels. He ends up wearing them for about a 1/4 of the meeting before he takes them back off and lets me have them back.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

This Week's Update: July 18-24

Sunday, July 18: I don't know why but Sunday was pure chaos before church and during. Not the relaxing Sabbath it's suppose to be for sure. Before church, Aiden got into the tadpole food and spilled it all over the floor making the upstairs smell like fish. He then got in to the garage and was playing around in Adam's car. After thathe came downstairs to play and ended up hitting Xavier, HARD, with a toy. It was not a good Aiden day. Then in Primary there seemed to be a lot of fires that needed to be put out. Plus the kids were hyped up, we had some trying to escape, it was good times.

Monday, July 19: The boys started swim lessons again. They really like it, at least Xavier does. Damon is not so sure yet. I think Xavier is more of an individual sports kinda guy so I think it is more up his alley.

Tuesday, July 20: I had my dr's appointment, everything is going well. Dr Gros thinks this baby is going to be a small one. I didn't have the heart to tell him that he said the same thing about Aiden who was almost 9 lbs. We'll be finding out soon if he's right since August 20th is quickly coming upon us.
Damon had his end of the season baseball party at Vallentino's. I don't know what the boys were more excited about the fried chicken, the ice cream, or the cotton candy.

Wednesday, July 21: Wednesday we woke up to the glorious sound of rain. The boys had to beg me to get out of bed, I could have stayed alllll day. Swim lessons were of course cancelled so we had a nice little day of movies and hanging out.

Thursday, July 22: The fair came to town which brought the rodeo. So we headed over to CICO park for that. We sat with 2 families from our ward which was a lot of fun. The boys favorite part is the bull riding. One of the rider's got a score of 91 on his ride.

Friday, July 23: Every one's favorite day...CLEANING DAY. Plus it was the day of extended cleaning which always makes for a day of fun.
That night Adam and his brother Ben went to run their first Ultra-Marathon. The distance was 50K (31.1 miles). It was also the first time they had run a night run, it started at 11 pm. Adam ended up coming in 2nd place and Ben took 3rd. Thankfully Todd drove them up to Scandia, KS and cheered them on the whole time. They both felt very fortunate to have him there. I know it must have been hard because Adam admitted to wanting to quit half way through but making himself push through to finish. Oh and another big shout out to Ben for sharing his water bottles si
nce Adam forgot his...who needs water when you are running 30+ miles in hot, humid KS!

The boys: Todd, Ben and Adam
After the race

Saturday, July 24: Our ward had a "Pioneer" Activity planned at the City park. It included a lot of different games for the kids to play. The boys had a great time playing with their friends. We went to the mall after to get new school shoes. The boys love getting new tennis shoes...and I love getting things ready for school!
That night we met up with the family for dinner at Early Edition. And then went back to the Littles to chat.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Why I WIll NO LONGER Shop at Gymboree

WARNING: I know many people will think this is "silly" that I'm banning a store. But what you must know is that I HIGHLY value good customer service. If a store does not provide that, then I will not give them my money. Also know, this is not my first time purchasing from Gymboree. I have purchased a LOT of clothes from them as gifts, for my children, etc.

Before we knew what our soon to be arriving 4th child was, I ordered Easter outfits for my boys in February. I also ordered some cute little dresses that I loved and wanted if we were going to have a girl this time around. Although I didn't know what we were having yet, I knew I wanted these cute little dresses because they were either orange or had fish on them or both...both things I love and find adorable on children. Anywho, I checked to make sure I would have time to return and get a full refund if we were having another boy.

March came, we found out that baby would be another boy so I packaged the dresses up and sent them back. Gymboree has a full refund policy for items purchased within 60 days and has the receipt. I sent them back within 30 days with a receipt. I never heard from them until last month.

Last month I received a merchandise credit card saying that my order was not received within the 60 day time period so I could not have a credit back to my bank account. Honestly, I was a little annoyed because it was a lot of money and I would rather have it in my bank account. But I didn't think too much about it knowing that with school starting and having a new baby, clothes will be purchased so no biggie. I don't know why it wasn't returned in time...blame the post office, maybe?

This past week I received a coupon in the mail for a discount from Gymboree and Xavier saw the advertisement and really wanted one of the jackets they had pictured. Sunday night we get online and look it up and make sure that is the one he wanted. Damon also picked out a jacket. And each boy chose a backpack as well. Normally I wouldn't spend that much on the items they wanted but I had the coupon and my merchandise credit so I was ready to shop.

I go to checkout and the Merchandise credit cannot be used online...WHAT!?! Now in very fine print on the back of the card it says this, did I read that before...NO...what company only has merchandise credit available in store and not online. Its 2010 people! I would have never dreamed the credit could be used just in the store. Everything I had returned was purchased online, it makes no sense to me that I then could not use the credit online as well.

Here's my main problem...If I had a local Gymboree it would be no problem. I do not. The closest one is an hour away in a town we rarely go to. The other locations are over 2 hours away. I am one month from having another baby, traveling is not a good thing for me. I am VERY pregnant and there is no way I'm leaving town just to shop. I also have c-sections so it will be a little while after the baby is born before I will be physically able to go out and have a shopping spree.

I emailed Gymboree about my little predicament and they were basically no help at all and just restated their company policies. To me, companies who want my business and my money, would treat their customers with more respect and understanding. I also do not understand how a store can limit how you use your own credit. The main reason I believe Gymboree only allows merchandise credit in store and not online is they know that almost 80% of people do not use the gift cards they have. So if I fail to use my credit, then that is money in their pocket. I will use the credit and then I will never buy from them again. I don't care how cute their clothes are or how great the quality is. There are many many cute kids clothes that I can purchase from anywhere in the world ONLINE!

Also this week I have had little problems with JC Penney and Gap. I emailed both of these companies, got an immediate reply and both went above and beyond what I expected to satisfy the situations. Gymboree should take a lesson from these two companies who seem to know how to treat their customers.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

This Week's Update: July 11-17

A boring week but with some pictures!

Sunday, July 11
: So tired and sore it really was not fun to go to church. Poor Aiden was so tired that in nursery he just started to bawl. They brought him into me in Primary kinda freaked out because they had never seen him cry. I take him to Adam and he ends up falling asleep in Priesthood (like half the other guys!). That is so not Aiden, he was just completely worn out and still getting over his little cold he had. We also had a lovely time with the 10-11 year old boys in sharing time. Threats to send them to RS with their mothers' were issued.

Monday, July 12: Grocery shopping and errand day. At the Johnson's house last week, Christy had covered their dining table in a thick plastic which was the most genius idea I've ever seen! We are always having tablecloth issues but if I leave it uncovered the wood gets ruined. So I bought myself some of that stuff at Hobby Lobby and Adam and I wrapped the table that night. It looks like it has been saran-wrapped but so much easier to take care of. It was also Xavier's last baseball practice and Adam was the happiest man that night!

We also had a battle of wills with Aiden. I'm not sure if anyone won. He's a fun/stubborn kid.

Tuesday, July 13: I babysat a friend's daughters and we decided to walk to the park at the school. We had a little snack break at home and then I tried to show my skills as an animal balloon sculptor but the balloons sucked and the pump broke so it didn't quite workout. The boys were really disappointed. I need to find some better balloons. Damon had his last practice that night. We are all so excited that baseball season is finally coming to an end.

Wednesday, July 14: Visiting teaching in the morning, I had an appointment with one of my people and then my visiting teachers came over as well. They always bring me chocolate, I love those women! The boys had fun playing with their kids which is always nice too.
Xavier had his last game and we did a little presentation after. Adam gave out certificates, I had made cupcakes, and one of the parents had printed a really cool poster for all the kids. He even made a cd of pictures which was awesome. Now I have to figure out how to make Damon one, he was a little jealous of Xavier's.
Thursday, July 15: We went to a sports day with some of the kids from church. The boys had a great time running around with their friends. Plus you can't beat popsicles after a hot summer morning. We made a quick trip to Wal-Mart to check out hermit crab cages (YEA! Can't wait for that!) and then Sonic for lunch. Unfortunately the stupidest people work at the east side Sonic. I had to order 3 times and they still messed it up. Plus I get the same thing every time and every time its a different amount. Damon's last game is tonight but his after season party isn't until next week. His team ended up losing but it was to the one team that was undefeated and in my opinion little cheaters but thats besides the point.

Friday, July 16: Cleaned the house and the boys did their craft for the week...glitter sea shells for the bathroom. Never again are we doing a craft with glitter, another reason to be thankful for no little girls in the house. Adam brought home subs for dinner and then we spent some time at the swimming pool. Late night swimming always makes for good sleeping boys. We had stopped at Dairy Queen for ice cream after and the ice cream machines were BROKEN! WHAT? It was very disappointing but we did find some at Dara's but Call Hall ice cream is no Butterfinger Blizzard!

Saturday, July 17: Aiden woke up bright and early so he and I headed outside to work in the front yard. I had ordered some plants that came on Thursday so they really needed to get in the ground. We went to lunch as a fam and met up with Grandpa and Grandma Little (purely accidental but it happens practically every Saturday). The boys went to their house after to clean while Adam, Aiden and I went to run some errands. Adam had a meeting in Salina for church so the boys and I decided to eat leftovers for dinner then off to the pool and to Sonic for some hot fudge sundaes. We came home right before Adam so it worked out perfectly for bed time.

Friday, July 9, 2010

This Week's Update: July 4 - 10

WARNING: The following is all about our very boring week.

Sunday, July 4: Went to church as a family, no offense but a lot of long testimonies during Sacrament meeting. After church we had about 26 people over for dinner and fireworks. We had Adam's family, Todd and Kari, 2 families from the ward and then both of our neighbors. With the amount of food we had, we could of fed about 26 more people. But we have enjoyed the leftovers for lunch this past week.

Monday, July 5: Adam had the day off and he had insisted on doing NOTHING all day. It kinda worked but I think he did more then he had hoped. It rained most of the day so we did stay in all day except for a late afternoon walk around the neighborhood when the rain had finally stopped.

Tuesday, July 6: The boys and I went for our weekly groceries, my baby dr appointment (which included a funny conversation with the boys of why they will never be patients of Dr Gros. Had to just break the bad news that he was done with them once they were out of me.) Quick trip to Target followed before we hurried home to meet Adam for lunch. Damon had another baseball practice so Xavier, Aiden and I stayed home and watched a movie while they were gone.

When we stopped at Dillions a wasp flew into our car while I was getting Aiden out of his car seat. Xavier SCREAMS the loudest scream I've ever heard, horror films should hire him. He then tells me there is a wasp in the car so I get Aiden out and have them stand to the back of the car while I look for the wasp. I then see it laying on a seat like it is dead. It slowly starts to move so I take a magazine and brush it out of the car and it flies off. Honestly, I think Xavier's scream stunned it. It really was that loud.

Wednesday, July 7: Adam took the van to get the oil changed so we walked to the school park that morning to play for a bit. I had another meeting with Infant and Child Services to get Aiden some assistance with speech. No offense but so far its just proving to be a big waste of time but I once they actually start working with him it will be good. Just a lot of paperwork that seems pointless. Damon had a Cub Scout activity at church, thankfully they let Xavier participate too so we just had to entertain Aiden for an hour.

Thursday, July 8: Aiden woke up with a fever and was miserable all day. He slept most of the day which was good and would drink apple juice. I think he ate half a piece of bread and that was it. Unfortunately, both boys had baseball games. Adam of course went with Xavier since he's the coach and Aiden and I went to Damon's. I put Aiden in the stroller and he at one point fell asleep at the game. This kid never falls asleep anywhere but his bed, forget the fact that we were at a very loud baseball game. Damon didn't bat too well but he had a couple awesome outs which I think made up for the one hit. Jim came along to watch, it was nice to have someone to talk too!

Friday, July 9: Everyone's favorite day, Cleaning Day! We were able to get the whole house cleaned (minus the bathrooms because that's Adam's job!). Aiden didn't have a fever anymore but was pretty whiny all day. Adam brought home DQ and ice cream which makes everyone's day brighter, right?

Saturday, July 10: We made a quick trip up to KC for the day to spend time with the Furnells and Johnsons. We had a lot of fun at a waterpark, then went to the Johnsons for dinner. It's been 2 years since we had gotten together and sadly we made the effort since the Furnells are moving to Michigan very very soon. But we had a great time and love getting together with everyone.

I realized Friday that we have 6 weeks exactly until new baby boy is born. Damon is very excited for the meals that will be brought by the Relief Society. I don't know if that says something about my cooking or just the fact that the meals will most likely have meat which makes him the most happy. I'm looking forward to being able to breath, bend, and roll over again.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

This Week's Update: June 27-July 3

Trying to do a better job of what we do with our we'll see how long I do this little update every week but its worth a shot.

Sunday, June 27: I got the joy and privilege of speaking in church on a modern day application of the Good Samaritan. Damon shared the scripture and Primary and Adam had to teach Elders Quorum. Good thing the Dolezals showed for church! My uncle Rae passed away that morning. We had known since Wednesday that he would be passing away.

Monday, June 28
: Damon and Xavier start their 2nd week of swim lessons. They really like it even though they don't have a boy teacher. Damon had another baseball game, they lost.

Tuesday, June 29
: Busy day with swim lessons, a speech evaluation for Aiden, Adam's day to come home for lunch, Damon and Xavier had piano lessons, Aiden and I went to our farm share to pick up our vegetables, and then both boys had baseball practice.

Wednesday, June 30
: Happy Birthday to Papa Don! Damon moved on to station 4 in swim lessons. Adam came home a little early so we could travel down to my parents for Uncle Rae's funeral.

Thursday, July 1
: The funeral was held at 10:30. It was a very nice service. I loved the slide show and seeing old pictures of my uncles and my mom as little kids along with my grandparents as a little, young family. I also loved the cardboard testimonies that showed all the many "jobs" my uncle did in his church. The minister at times got very emotional while he was speaking. I didn't realize how much of a role my uncle had played in his life as well. We also got to see distant relatives we hadn't seen in awhile and some old friends of my mom's. And on a petty side, I totally forgot about a pair of shoes I had that would have matched my dress better then the ones I was wearing. Thought of them on the way home and I keep thinking about how much better and cuter they were!

Friday, July 2
: Last day of swim lessons for the boys, at least for 2 weeks until their next session starts. We cleaned the house. Adam surprised us by coming home early. We then met at Texas Star for dinner with Grandma & Grandpa Little and Great Grandma for Grandpa's birthday. Followed by ice cream cake for dessert!

Saturday, July 3
: Prepared for our big Independence Day cookout, ate lunch at Smashburger, and bought our first pet! Xavier got a tadpole, Ferocious X-Man Dolezal, that is currently residing in his tadpole/frog habitat in my kitchen. If he dies, its going to be total devastation around here. I also talked Adam into helping me paint our bedroom and it actually worked. It looks so nice, what a good husband!

For Uncle Rae: