Thursday, October 21, 2010

Family Photos

After 2 plus years of forgoing family pictures we recently had some taken. I am thrilled with what we ended up with and since they say that a picture is worth a thousands words, I'll shut up and let them speak for themselves.

 That's not all folks. 
You have to click here to head over to the blog of the photographer to see the rest.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Excuses, Excuses...

If you opened the dictionary to the phrase 'blog slacker' I can almost guarantee you will find a picture of me. My blog and almost everything surrounding it has taken a back burner since the kids went back to school. This is evidenced by my puny number of posts in August and September, my lack of commenting on other blogs (I promise, I am still reading them.), and the absence or extreme tardiness of replying to your comments here. I am sorry, really I am.

I was reminded in church on Sunday that the first step to repentance is to recognize that there is a problem, so.....Hi. My name is Natalie and I am a serious blog slacker.

There. Consider it recognized.

But just because I've recognized it doesn't mean I'm not going to try to justify it. So....I think it may have something to do with the fact that blogging takes me an excruciatingly long time to do. I can "hear" what I want to say in my head, but when it comes to making it travel to my fingertips, it makes a detour somewhere along the way and things never sound like I want them to. Trust me, they are much more witty, funny, and thought provoking in my head. It may also have something to do with adjusting back to a school schedule, Richard's travel schedule, homework, lessons, team sports, volunteer time, scouts, potty training, or that life has simply been crazy and my brain cells stretched too thin.

I know...excuses, excuses.

Because really let's face it....there is time to blog. I have the same number of hours in my day as I did back in June or July, I have just chosen, or in some cases, life has chosen for me, to spend those hours on other things. Whether I like it or not.

One particular excuse some friends recently introduced me to is couponing. Yes, I am now one of those annoying 'coupon people' who takes an extra minute at the end of checkout to scan coupons. Yep, one of those people that apparently a lot of cashiers hate, and someone who has been saving more money than I realized was possible from those little inserts in my paper and mail.

Here are just a few of my conquests from my some latest saving trips.
 Everything in this picture was FREE! including the smile on my cute little model's face.

 Toilet paper- $1.38- because who wants to spend a lot of money on something you soil with nastiness and flush down the toilet?

And the one I am most proud of...
2 bottles of laundry detergent (totaling 50 loads), 1 bottle of dish liquid, 8 bars of soap, 36 of those things in the pink boxes, and 6 bags of Halloween candy = $13.39 at Rite Aid.
BUT if you count the $8 I got back on this purchase from their Up+ rewards program my total was only $5.39. That is a lot of free or really cheap stuff and just by following this blog and by planning my shopping trips using this site.

And although it has taken me some time to get organized and figure out just exactly what I am doing, after one particular day of great savings I felt like I had saved enough that when I visited a friend's boutique party I could safely buy me one of these...
And since I think Richard gave it the universal male look of approval by rolling his eyes, I've decided that maybe some excuses are worth a little blog interruption.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Just Getting into the Spirit of Things

I love fall.

The crispness in the air...

The change of sunlight...

The array of delicious harvest foods...

The fallen leaves strewn about like a quilt pieced of crimson, amber, and ochre hued shapes.  Their decay permeating the air with the distinct scent of autumn.

It's heavenly.

And of course, there's Halloween. As much as I love fall, I really love Halloween. The decorating, the costumes, the candy...everything about it says that I was made for this holiday. If time, sheer energy, and the ever mighty dollar weren't an issue, I'm sure our house would take on the appearance of a spook alley attraction from a theme park for the month of October. You can bet it would be awesome.

This year, I think I was feeling like decorating just the house and yard was not enough. I could do more; like maybe I should make the decorating a little more personal this time around. So last week with the help of an old lamp with a broken light bulb I took the Halloween spirit onto my actual person with some Frankenstein like accessories- five of them to be exact. For an added touch of gruesome, a divet where a missing chunk of flesh should be was added just below.
I know that the inside of my arm is kind of an inconspicuous place for these accessories, so I promise that next year I will be more conscious of which body part I gouge with broken glass. I guess my aim was a little off that day. And although it doesn't look all that impressive with out the prescence of gushing blood I think that I have shown there are no legnths that I will not go to for a holiday that I love.

Oh, and if I get tired of the Frankenstein effect the nice medical staff at the Provo InstaCare provided me with this more girlie costume to trade off with.

Two-for-one costumes! Now that's what I'm talking about!

Heck, for $50 bucks I wouldn't have expected anything less.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Constructively Destructive

He came home with it. That creative little glint in his eye that told me he had plans. I'm always interested to see what forms from that glint. The other day while I was busy with scouts he disappeared into the garage and built a protective covering for his tortoise's newly inherited outdoor habitat using hammers, saws, wire cutters, and a staple gun- all by himself. I was most impressed.

He busily got to work with clay, toothpicks, paint, fishing twine and cardboard and upon entering the kitchen to find a bunch of little clay balls of varying sizes, I discovered the making of a universe right in my very own kitchen. Now on any other day having the solar system formed on my kitchen island would have been thrilling, but as I had been fighting a headache since early afternoon thrilling was a little too much to handle.

By evening the ache in my head would not relent. Despite 2 doses of meds and resting in a dark room it continued to build until nausea became my newest worry. So just when each planet was getting its very own personalized paint job I lost my dinner, decided to throw in the towel, and just go to bed...leaving my 4 munchkins in the hands of a boy who was lost in the creation of the heavens- literally.

I woke up a 5 a.m. feeling grateful I hadn't decapitated myself the night before like I had been tempted to and got up to see where the other 2 who hadn't ended up in bed with me had landed. As I opened my bedroom door I realized my house was lit up like a Christmas tree. As I walked around turning off lights I found that every light was on in my house except three. Not to mention the 2 televisions blaring in deafening decibels. Wow, I bet the power company loves us.

I had been given a glimpse of the completed solar system through squinty eyes in the dark of my bedroom the night before, so yeah, I had no idea what it really looked like. So I headed downstairs to the kitchen to get a better look at the finished product. This is what greeted me...

Suddenly, I felt my headache returning and I turned around, went up the stairs, and back to bed.
Just this once, the universe was going to have to wait for me.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Dallin Said...

First day of school 2010

"Smell me....if you DARE!"

"Guess what, Mom? I AM the new Tom Sawyer." (I am still wondering what exactly that means?)

"I can have Cookies & Cream AND Vanilla ice cream 'cause I have flat abs.

Said while putting on a robe "Rich people wear these, so I'm rich.... Now where is my allowance?

"There's a policeman! Everyone act nostril!!!"

Dallin- Is that the cheese from Maceys?
Me- Yes.
Dallin- I don't want it. It's Californian. I like Wisconsin. (What 7 yr old cares that much about his cheese?)

Some friends from Canada came to visit us before school started. While hiking to Timpanogos my friend was getting Ben excited about starting Kindergarten by asking his brothers what good things they remembered about Kindergarten. Dallin who is now only in 2nd grade replied somewhat reminiscent, "I remember Kindergarten like it was 2 years ago."